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COPYRIGHT 1915, 1919, 1920, 1921, 1923 



HOUSEKEEPING is not only the oldest, most fundamental 
and complex of all professions, but modern success in it is 
more difficult to attain than success in factory, warehouse, 
transportation or shop, because it must be attained by women work- 
ing alone, and with many purposes. Men in work and play have 
specialized in groups along a single path, for a single end. Women 
have specialized not as a group, but as individuals along all paths, 
for many ends. 

There are six distinct classes of activities: production, trans- 
portation, manufacture, storage, exchange and personal service. 
The boy is prepared for 1 5 years or more to co-operate witn otners 
in mastering one particular part of one of these activities. A man 
will give his life to the specialization and standardization of the 
methods and tools for a single oft repeated operation. Housekeep- 
ing, if a kitchen garden or milking is included, covers all six activ- 
ities. Often without preparation a young woman working alone, 
without the discipline of the group, expects to be an adept in all six 
fields and in all parts of each field at once! 

Mrs. Frederick has succeeded in specializing and standardizing 
the tools and methods for the many ever changing occupations of 
the home. This was an exceedingly difficult undertaking which 
she has admirably completed. 

Man is irresponsible, woman is deeply responsible and, there- 
fore, she evolved and built all the foundations of civilization and 
still holds onto them in her life. These foundations are home, cook- 
ing, textiles, pottery, storage, manufacturing, music, language, medi- 
cine and teaching. But man, like a boy growing beyond his mother's 
size, strength, experience, energy, authority, has usurped all that 
woman has developed, even to the feeding of babies with his modified 
food, and by his methods applied to her inventions has enormously 

increased and cheapened the product through group endeavor and 
through labor-saving equipment. Thus, man and woman have 
parted company industrially. Man may be at fault because he 
rushed impetuously ahead, woman may be at fault because she has 
held too long to the old. 

For women to gain a grip on the new the point of view must be 
changed. Therefore, earnest, high-minded, self-sacrificing, progres- 
sive women who have the privilege of this course, so thoroughly 
covering so great a problem, should come to it with the new point 
of view. They must learn to waive a hundred instincts and prej- 
udices they do not even know they possess, constantly and con- 
tinuously asking themselves "Why?" weighing the real value of 
what is relinquished against the gain in efficiency, time and self- 

There are many ideals in homekeeping. Mrs. Frederick's 
methods are good for all ideals, but because she has made work 
easier, do not add another half dozen ideals! I remember when 
sewing machines were first introduced ; they made the running of long 
tucks one hundred times easier. But this was made a reason for 
making seventy times as many tucks ! Because Household Engineer- 
ing makes tasks as formerly done much easier, do not take on a 
great deal more "unessential" work. 

The World War was fought with woman's direct help, women 
doing the work of men successfully because they followed the labor- 
saving principles of work established by men. Let women introduce 
these same principles into the work of the home and, thus, similarly 
make a success of their work as they have so signally done with 
men's work. This text is the manual which will point the way to 
a modern, successful solution. 


Author of "The Twelve Principles of Efficiency," Etc. 

NOTHING is more worth while than bringing efficiency into 
the home. When housekeeping becomes a science, as well as 
an art, when it is based on measurement then it becomes 
worthy of the best brains and highest endeavor. Mrs. Frederick 
has rendered a real service to this country, in that she has eliminated 
from housework that monotony that comes from doing uninteresting 
and repetitive work without an incentive, and in that she has seen 
the necessity for making the home a laboratory, a training school 
for the women and children in it, and perhaps an example to the men. 

Every reader of her book will find not only concrete directions 
as to how to make housework stimulating, productive and con- 
structive, but also a method of attack that applies to all problems of 
any life whatever they may be. 


Consulting Engineer. 
Author of "Fatigue Studies," "Motion Study," Etc., Etc. 

Dedicated to 

to whose encouragement and 

progressive leadership in reaching the 

mass of American homemakers with 

the gospel of home efficiency 

1 owe much inspiration 







IV. METHODS OF CLEANING . . . . . . 147 









BIBLIOGRAPHY ... . *. . . . . 517 

INDEX . . .,.".'. . . . . . 521 



SEVERAL years ago I faced the problem which con- 
fronts many young mothers how to do my housework 
and care for two small children, and yet have any time 
for myself or outside interests. 

I had managed my mother's home at different periods 
and really liked housework, especially cooking. But now it 
was a daily struggle to "get ahead" of household drudgery. 
Try as I would, there seemed so many tasks to do, so many 
steps to take, and so many matters needing my attention 
and supervision. Just as I felt I had reduced the cleaning 
to its lowest terms, I found the cooking or the laundry 
work or the mending claiming the remainder of my time. 
It was a continuous conflict to do justice to all the house- 
work tasks, and yet find enough time for the children. 
And between it all, I knew I was not doing justice to 
myself, and that I was becoming more and more tired out. 
Indeed, I was often without much energy to "dress up" in 
the evening, and when my husband came home, I was 
generally too spiritless to enjoy listening to his story of the 
day's work. 

Things were dragging on in this unsatisfactory way and 
I was becoming more and more discouraged with what 
seemed my lack of ability to manage my household prob- 
lem. Occasionally I was so depressed as to wish that I 
were not married and that I was back in my teaching 
"harness" where I did have a grip on things ! 

Just about this time my husband's work brought him in 



touch with the new movement called "scientific manage- 
ment," and he came home with glowing accounts of what 
it was accomplishing in the various shops, offices and fac- 
tories where it was being followed. In fact, he and his 
friends (some of whom were pioneers in the movement) 
talked nothing but this new "efficiency idea." Because I 
had an intuition that perhaps in this new idea was the life- 
preserver for which I had been so earnestly searching in 
my own problem, I listened eagerly to their discussion. 


I found that the purpose of scientific management was 
to save time and effort and to make things run more 
smoothly. Its object was to short-cut and reduce work to 
such a system that the shop or office or any business would 
be managed with less effort, less waste, and even at a 
lower cost. It seemed to me that this was exactly what 
my aim was in my own home, only I had all this time 
been helpless to carry it out! That was just what I too 
wanted some plan or general guiding principles that would 
make my housework easier, more successful and less 
expensive. If this wonderful new "scientific management" 
brings about such result in other businesses, why couldn't 
it do the same in my business of home-making? 

So I decided to learn all about it and understand it, and 
I went for help to my husband and his friends who were 
applying the new idea every day. 

"If this new efficiency idea is all you claim," I said to 
them, "and can be followed in work as widely different as 
iron foundries and shoe factories, I don't see why it can't 
be applied to housework as well. You men have made me 
so interested in it that I want to try it in my own home. 
But first I want you 'efficiency engineers,' as you call 
yourselves, to explain the idea to me in detail the why and 


the how and every point so that I will be sure that I 
thoroughly understand it before I attempt to put it into 
practice. Will you?" 


So my husband and other efficiency engineers made it 
clear to me, and I found that scientific management was 
nothing difficult or expensive or mysterious, but that it 
was a plan, or guiding set of twelve principles, as follows : 

1. Ideals. 7. Despatching. 

2. Common Sense. 8. Scheduling. 

3. Competent Counsel. 9. Reliable Records. 

4. Standardized Operations. 10. Discipline. 

5. Standardized Conditions. n. Fair Deal. 

6. Standard Practice. 12. Efficiency Reward. 

"There is this first principle of Ideals," they explained. 
"When we go into a factory and try to improve the work, 
the first thing we ask the owner about his business is, 
What are you running it for? The reason so many people 
are not making a success of their business is because they 
do not know why they are running it. Yet ideals are the 
most important thing to have in any work. They are that 
'something' that controls and guides the whble plan, a kind 
of chart they are trying to follow. You must know where 
you want to go before trying to get there. 

"Many women do have a strong ideal in their home- 
making. It frequently is health or the education of their 
children, or sometimes only a spotless house. Think of the 
Strong ideals that the mother of Charles Wesley and his 
brother must have had for their education to buoy her up 
in all those years of poverty! The ideal can be so strong 
as to look beyond present difficulties and discouragements 
and make work a success in spite of apparently handicap- 


ping conditions. The clearer a homemakers' ideals, the 
more . bound her work is to succeed. Homemakers, like 
other managers, must know what they are striving for. 


"Then there is this next principle Common Sense, which 
is sometimes only a homely term to cover some of the 
other principles. It is common sense to be sure your tools 
are sharp and in good condition before you start work 
and it's efficiency as well. Competent Counsel means expert 
advice. We efficiency engineers are one kind of competent 
counsel because our past experience and practice makes us 
'competent' to come into a new factory and suggest better 
methods and plans. Other 'counsel' is found in books, and 
the written experiences of what has been found out in this 
or that field. Even the most successful business men profit 
by the 'counsel' of specialists and their recorded experi- 
ences in solving problems in other lines. Many firms employ 
such paid counsel to visit their branch offices, instruct their 
salesmen, help their dealers, or in some way keep the 
workmen on the right track.'* 

The efficiency engineers continued their explanation while 
I listened attentively. 


"Standardized operations, etc., sounds formidable, but 
you will see clearly what the next three points mean. For 
instance, when we go into a factory, we watch the men at 
work, we see what motions and tools they use ; then, after 
repeated experiments- and time studies, we try to give them 
standardized or definite conditions of work, and show them 
methods or standardized operations. This means working 
at the right height, with the right tools, under the best con- 
ditions of light, ventilation and comfort, with the least 


possible waste of energy and time. When we have found 
out this best and shortest, or 'standardized' way, we 
write it down, and these instructions of just how to do a 
given task are called 'standard practice/ Then all the 
workmen need to do is to follow these instructions and they 
get the best results/' 


"The next two points of Despatching and Scheduling are 
very important," they continued. "You see, when we have 
determined the one best or standard way to do any task, 
we are not quite finished. We have to go still further and 
find the best order of work, or when to do it, as well as 
how to do it. 

"Despatching means planning, and Scheduling means the 
carrying out of that plan. You know how they despatch 
trains on schedule time. Suppose a train leaves Chicago at 
8 P. M. and arrives at St. Louis at 7 A. M. The despatching 
consists in running the train so that it reaches all the inter- 
vening stations Peoria, Springfield, etc. at a specified 
time. The schedule is the 1 1 hours it takes to make the trip. 
Work in a factory is despatched in much the same way. 
The raw material enters one room and then another and so 
on ; or the workmen take up first one task and then another 
after it has been laid out in definite order by the foreman. 
This means saved time, and orderly, unconfused work. 

"There is a great deal to be explained about Immediate, 
Accurate and Reliable Records. It includes ways of keep- 
ing information, bills, receipts, addresses, etc., so that no 
time is wasted looking for a piece of information when 

"The last three points Discipline, Fair Deal and Effi- 
ciency Reward taken together, refer to the benefits that 
scientific management brings to the worker himself. It 


isn't enough to make work shorter and easier and less 
wasteful it must mean more happiness and even more 
money to those who work. In shops where scientific man- 
agement is in force, there have been few strikes and 
troubles. Applied to the home, it would refer of course to 
the hired worker or servant. If a mistress applied the 
principles of Fair Play, for instance, to her help, they 
wouldn't leave her in a crisis, perhaps, as they do now. 
And if she used the principle of Efficiency Reward, she 
might secure from them that something over and above 
mere work that "service plus" which makes any employee 
really valuable." 


After I had grasped this brief explanation of scientific 
management, I visited factories and places where I could 
see the principles in actual operation, so as to make it even 
more clear in my mind. 

I saw the marvelous improvement this efficiency idea had 
brought in the commonplace task of laying bricks, which 
had been done up till then in the same way since the time 
of the Pharaohs. In all history, bricks had been dumped 
in a mixed pile at the workmen's feet. Then he had to 
stoop his entire weight, 150 pounds say, each time to pick 
up a 4-pound brick before he set it in place. Think 
of the thousands of times a day he did this useless stooping! 
Now, when the efficiency engineers watched bricklayers at 
work, they saw how many waste motions and time were 
lost in this senseless stooping; so they devised a little adjust- 
able table, which brought the bricks in an orderly pile to 
the worker's side, and because he didn't need to stoop at 
all, or even take time to sort the bricks, he now laid 350 
bricks an hour where before he could lay only 120, besides 
working with far less fatigue and effort. 


Then I was surprised to see how "common sense" and 
"standardized conditions" had been applied in a cash regis- 
ter factory. It had been the habit of the workmen to go 
every morning for their special tools to lockers at the end 
of a very long floor, and to return the tools there in the 
evening. When "competent counsel" efficiency men studied 
this factory, they immediately noticed this twice-a-day 
double walk across the floor, with resulting confusion, loss 
of time, and talking. This waste of time and steps was 
avoided later by having the benches of each worker fitted 
with small drawers and cross-strips to accommodate each 
man's tools. Then the moment a man came to his bench, he 
could start work, and at night work until the whistle blew, 
which meant more work and less unnecessary wasted time. 

I visited another instance of scientific management in the 
shop of a chemist who had a force of girls packing pills 
into boxes. Formerly they counted out a hundred pills by 
hand, at the rate of one box a minute. But by installing a 
simple little device which automatically counted a hundred 
pills and pushed them off in a little shovel into boxes fed 
to them on a belt underneath, each girl was now able to 
fill twenty boxes a minute with no more labor. 

Again, I saw a workman in an envelope factory who 
had been considered the best in the shop because he could 
turn out the largest number* of envelopes per hour. But 
when the efficiency engineers observed him, they found 
that he took four cuts to each paper, thus making a great 
deal of waste and expense. By finding a new way to cut 
envelopes with only three cuts, the efficiency engineers saved 
tons of paper and thousands of dollars for the firm each 
year. And I will never forget the increased efficiency which 
resulted in one foundry by the most simple little change. 
Formerly the workers used small shovels which meant very 
frequent stooping to dispose of a given pile of coal. But 


by studying to see just what weight and shape of larger 
shovel a man could handle most easily, and yet carry the 
largest load, the same number of workers were able with 
the new large shovel to move the same load of coal in one- 
third the time ! And all because scientific management had 
studied a shovel! 


In every instance I saw how these efficiency principles 
were saving time, and effort, and money, wherever applied. 
The more I saw and read, the more certain I felt that they 
could save time and effort and money in my business the 
home. There was the point of height didn't I with hun- 
dreds of women stoop unnecessarily over kitchen tables and 
sinks and ironing boards as well as bricklayers stoop over 
bricks? Couldn't we perhaps standardize dishwashing by 
raising the height of the sink and changing other conditions ? 
Did we not waste time and needless walking in poorly 
arranged kitchens taking twenty steps to. get the egg-beater 
when it could have been hung over my table, just as effi- 
ciency insisted the workman's tools must be grouped? 
Couldn't my housework train be despatched from station 
to station, from task to task, and I too work on a "schedule," 
or definite plan, so that I wouldn't lose time in thinking what 
to do next or in useless interruptions? 

I came to earnestly believe that scientific management 
could, and must, solve housework problems as it had already 
solved other work problems. I began to see where I had 
been losing time where I had been taking waste motions 
and useless steps where I could use different tools and 
methods. Formerly I had been doing my work in a dead, 
mechanical way, but now every little task was a new and 
interesting problem. I found that housework was just as 
interesting and more so than many other tasks of business. 


Every day I tried to find new ways, new methods and new 
short cuts in my home problems. If I made out a good 
schedule of work for one week I tried to improve on it for 
the week following. No housework detail was too small or 
too unimportant. I constantly kept in mind that "shovel" 
which had cut down the drudgery of coal heaving by one- 
third ! I found that I, too, was actually doing my work 
in almost one- third less time, without any extra physical, 
and with far less nervous effort. I found that I could 
"despatch" my work, that I could "standardize" it to a 
great extent, and so have that longed-for "time to myself" 
some part of the day. 


But by far the best result of all that came was the con- 
fident "efficiency attitude" of mind which I developed. No 
matter how hard things were and they did not grow per- 
fect all at once I had that inward' feeling that they would, 
and should, come right in the end. I felt that in spite of 
any difficulty or trying conditions, that I could master my 
house problems that there were solutions, and that there 
was no such word as "fail" in the whole language of scien- 
tific management. I cannot express how much poise and 
determination came from this efficiency attitude, the atti- 
tude of being superior to conditions, of having faith .in 
myself and in my work, to feel that it was drudgery or 
degrading only if I allowed myself to think so. I felt I was 
working hand in hand with the efficiency engineers in busi- 
ness, and that what they were accomplishing in industry, I 
too was accomplishing in the home. 

I kept on studying, visiting plants and factories, and get- 
ting in touch more widely with the movement. Besides 
studying myself, I got friends to watch themselves at work 
and tell me the results. I began to test equipment and 


household apparatus in my own home so that I could tell 
other women what I found out. I remodeled my own 
kitchen and then the kitchens of friends. Before I knew 
it, I became a "household engineer," and was called in as 
"competent counsel" by other homemakers! 

I was so enthusiastic over the results of my experiments 
that I wrote four articles called "The New Housekeeping" 
which appeared in The Ladies' Home Journal of 1912. The 
interest from them was so great that I later brought out 
the same material in book form. Since then the application 
of efficiency principles and scientific - management to the 
home has been more widespread than I ever dared hope or 

I have had literally thousands of correspondents among 
all kinds of homemakers. In one month only over 1,600 
women wrote me for information. Sometimes I am able 
to help them with suggestions for a better kitchen arrange- 
ment. In many cases I lay out "schedules" of work. Again, 
I tell them about the new tools which are tested every 
month in my own home, Applecroft Experiment Station. 

Not only have I been able to help these thousands of 
correspondents, but they have helped me with many sug- 
gestions and especially to understand more fully the prob- 
lems that come to homemakers in all sections. Perhaps it 
is the cost of living, or the struggle with young children, or 
the lack of conveniences, or again, the feeling that house- 
work is drudgery. I have tried to be a "competent coun- 
sel," a "household engineer" to all of them, and do for 
them what I so greatly wished someone could have done for 
me in my former housework struggles. 


This course in "Household Engineering" includes in 
greater detail everything given in my book, "The New 


Housekeeping," and all the help and suggestions gathered 
from constant study during the five years which have 
elapsed since its publication. 

My correspondence has given me an exceptionally wide 
viewpoint; and in this course I have tried to present the 
whole subject of the application of scientific management 
to the home in such a way that any homemaker, no matter 
where she lives or what her home conditions, can under- 
stand and apply it to the solution of her own problems. 

I want you who take this course to feel that you are not 
working alone in your own home kitchen. I want you to 
feel that when you discover new methods of housework and 
better ways of management that you can receive the same 
recognition that a scientist or business investigator receives. 
Do not think you are working out the problem for your own 
home only. You are helping solve the problems of count- 
less other women and homes, and what you do will be passed 
on, and help build up a great mass of proved knowledge on 
housekeeping. Is not housework as worth while studying 
as the shoveling of coal ? Is not housekeeping the biggest, 
the most essential industry of all? 

I am confident that some -of you who take this course 
have already been successfully meeting difficult conditions. 
You need only a little more assistance and the presentation 
of this new viewpoint to become a household engineer your- 
self. All my efforts would be useless if you did not co- 
operate with me to carry out scientific management in your 
own home. I want your help and interest in making this 
course a mighty success. You are going to be one of a 
great band of women investigators, working toward the 
splendid aim of putting housework on a standardized, 
professional basis. 





WHEN we estimate the time consumed in all the vari- 
ous tasks of the home, cleaning, cooking, serving 
meals, laundry, etc., we find that about 70 per cent 
of the housekeeper's day is spent in and about the kitchen. 
It is therefore clear that any plan for a reorganization of 
the work of the home on a more efficient basis must begin 
with a careful study of present kitchen conditions and 
methods of work. 

What is a kitchen? It is a place for the preparation of 
food. All unrelated work, such as laundry work, with its 
particular equipment, should be kept out of the kitchen as 
much as possible. We see then that a kitchen, or a place 
merely for food preparation, can be much smaller than was 
formerly the case when it was used as a combined sitting- 
room, laundry and general workshop. 

The first step towards reducing time spent in the kitchen 
is to have a kitchen small and compact, without loosely con- 
nected pantries and cupboards. The small kitchen costs 
less to build, but even more important to the worker, the 
small kitchen saves steps by concentrating the working 
processes. It should be slightly oblong, or almost square 
as this shape permits the most step-saving arrangement of 



the main equipment. Good sizes are 9 by n feet; n by 13 
feet; 14 by 16 feet; and in large homes with service and 
large equipment, 18 by 18 feet. 

Formerly much more storage or pantry space was neces- 
sary than today when more frequent marketing is possible. 
Also, a pantry which contains the pots, pans and utensils 
needed in the kitchen causes waste motion and useless steps. 
As will be described in detail later, the efficient plan is to 
have utensils and materials grouped close to the surface 
where they are actually used. 

For this reason particularly, the detached kitchen pantry 
is giving place to the built-in pantry which forms an integral 
part of the kitchen, and to the portable kitchen cabinet 
which sometimes takes its place. The average pantry or 
cupboard with broad, widely-separated, and high, useless 
shelves is responsible for much of the fatigue and trotting 
back and forth of the worker. An improved construction 
plan would be to take some of the pantry space and use it 
for cupboards and shelves built into the kitchen itself. 

If the family is small and has simple service, only a very 
tiny butler's pantry is needed, and even this can be dis- 
pensed with. The more direct the route between kitchen 
and dining room, the more step-saving and easy is the 
serving of meals. The butler's pantry in its most common 
location between dining-room and kitchen has the two good 
points of preventing kitchen odors and noises from disturb- 
ing the dining room, and of storing table china. But with 
adequate ventilation, which the kitchen should have in any 
case, simple service and built-in conveniences for china in 
the dining-room, the sole reasons for the .existence of the 
butler's pantry are removed. In brief, the closer the con- 
nection between kitchen and dining-room, and the fewer the 
detached pantries and cupboards, the simpler will be the 
processes both of preparing and serving food.' 



When we study the steps entailed in food preparation, 
we find that work in the kitchen does not consist of inde- 
pendent, separate acts, but of a series of inter- related proc- 
esses. No matter whether we are serving a six-course 
formal luncheon, or a simple family breakfast, each act in 
food preparation is part of a distinct process. There are 
just two of these processes: (i) PREPARING FOOD, and 
(2) CLEARING AWAY. Each of them has (or should have) 
definite, distinct steps, as we see if we analyze our work 
from the time preparation of food is started to the moment 
when the last dish is washed and laid away. 

The steps in the preparing process are : 

(1) Raw materials taken from storage, refrigerator 
or pantry to 

(2) Preparing surface where they are beaten, mixed, 
or put in condition to place on 

(3) Cooking surface or in cooking device. When fin- 
nished, placed on 

(4) Serving surface (table or tray) on which hot food 
is laid and given final touches before being sent 
to the table. 

In other words, we (i) COLLECT, (2) PREPARE, (3) COOK, 
and (4) SERVE food materials according to these definite 
steps, even with so simple a task as boiling an egg. 

The steps in the clearing away process are : 

(1) Remove soiled dishes and utensils from dining- 

(2) Stack and scrape them to right of sink. 

(3) Wash, drain and wipe. 

(4) Lay away in respective closets and shelves. 



In other words, we (i) REMOVE, (2) SCRAPE, (3) WASH, 
and (4) LAY AWAY dishes and utensils according to these 
definite steps, in this definite order at every meal. 

It therefore follows that the equipment connected with 
these two processes and their respective chain of steps 
should be arranged in a corresponding order. This prin- 



A. Preparing route. B. Clearing away route. 

ciple of arranging and grouping equipment to meet the 
actual order of work is the basis of kitchen efficiency. In 
other words, we cannot leave the placing of the sink, stove, 
doors and cupboards entirely to the architect. The reason 


why so many kitchens are work-making is solely because 
both the fixed and portable equipment are riot placed in 
right relation to all kitchen processes. Instead, equipment 
is commonly placed wherever there happens to be space left 
after cutting in all the doors and windows. 




Again considering the two kitchen processes, (a) PRE- 
PARING and (b) CLEARING AWAY, we note that a definite 
piece of equipment corresponds to each definite step, as 
follows : 


(a) Preparing Process 

(1) Storage, pantry, refrigerator, ice-box, etc. 

(2) Table or kitchen cabinet surface. 

(3) Stove or other cooking equipment. 

(4) Table, tray on wheels, or other serving surface. 

(b) Clearing Away Process 

(1) Stack surface to right of sink. 

(2) Sink. 

(3) Drain surface to left of sink. 

(4) Adjacent closets and shelves to left of drain. 

If the storage, stove, tables, sinks, etc., are arranged after 
this fundamental order, the work will proceed in a pro- 
gressive, step-saving track, or "routing," as the efficiency 
engineer calls work which proceeds in a consecutive, orderly 

A. Preparing route. B. Clearing away route. 




manner. If the equipment is not arranged on this principle, 
the result will be cross-tracking, useless steps and waste 
energy in all kitchen work. On pages 22 and 23 are given 
two diagrams which clearly illustrate the efficient versus the 
drudgifying kitchen arrangement. 

The "routing" or step-saving method of kitchen arrange- 
ment requires separate surfaces for each process. The old 
and commonly followed plan is to have one "kitchen table" 
at which preparing is done, hot dishes set down, soiled 
dishes from the dining-room dumped, etc. This results in 
a double or triple handling of utensils and dishes besides 
unnecessary steps back and forth. 

For instance, if one kitchen table in the center of the 
room be used as the surface on which to make a pie and 
also as the surface on which to lay the hot pie when baked, 
and also as the surface on which to lay the soiled dining- 
room dishes, let us see what happens. The egg-beater, 
bowls, pie-tin, etc., as well as lard, flour, etc., must be 
brought from their respective permanent places to the table. 



After they are used, each article has to be taken back ; the 
pie when finished, is carried several steps from stove to 
table. The soiled dishes brought from dining room are laid 
first on this table and then require a second handling to 
take them to the sink where they are ultimately washed. 
Contrast the different handlings and walking required by 
this arrangement with the same work if done under the 
efficient arrangement given in the first diagram. At the 
preparing table is everything necessary for making the pie 
with the exception of raw materials which are kept in 
adjacent refrigerator, hence there is no walking to gather 
materials and utensils together. When the pie is finished, it 
is laid with a single motion on the serving surface to the 
right of stove. Soiled dishes, instead of being dumped on 






center table, are directely "routed" to the right of sink with 
but a single trip and a single handling. 

No one surface can serve for several processes without 
resulting in extra handling, extra walking and confused 

In addition, the kind of material needed to cover the pre- 
paring surface or table, is generally quite different from 
that on which hot pots can be placed safely. The preparing 
surface can be made of any impervious material, but the 
serving surface demands a metal, heat-resisting covering. 

It is much better to have several small surfaces for each 
different process or special work, than to have one large 
surface on which miscellaneous work is performed. For 


instance, it is more efficient to have a small special surface 
on which to clean vegetables near the sink (where they must 
be washed) than it is to prepare them on a general "catch- 
all" table which will necessitate a trip with them back 
to the sink. If preparing is always done at one place, serv- 
ing at another, soiled dishes laid on a definite unalterable 
surface to the right of the sink there will be less con- 
fusion, less handling and consequently less waste time. 


Many housekeepers, even when won over to the worth 
of scientific grouping of equipment, seem to think it impos- 
sible to alter wrong arrangements in their present already- 
built or rented homes. But a little study will show that 
even the most inconvenient kitchen can be made step-saving. 

If the stove and flue must be permanent in their present 
position, the stove can be used as the pivot to which the 
entire plan can be adapted, still keeping the right order of 

The sink and plumbing connections can even be radically 
changed without too great expense or interference with 
other systems in the house construction. 

Tables can most easily be moved into the right position ; 
or a tray table on wheels can act as a stacking surface for 
the sink if the sink is tightly jammed into a corner, 
or as a serving surface to the right of the stove in cases 
where space is at a premium. 

Sometimes a few shelves over the kitchen table, near 
the sink or the stove, will replace the inconvenient shelves 
of detached pantries ; or two-inch strips on which to hang 
pots and small utensils will enable the idea of grouping to 
be followed out so that the kitchen approximates the ideal, 
step-saving plan. Often a portable kitchen cabinet, rightly 
placed, will effect a great improvement 



The same principle of grouping already applied to the 
fixed equipment (stove, sink, tables, etc.) must also be 
applied to the placing of the small, portable equipment 
The old idea of keeping pots and pans out of sight, or of 
putting bowls and kitchen china in a separate closet from 
that containing groceries or utensils, is opposed to the effi- 
ciency idea which insists that bowls, pots, and all utensils 
shall be permanently grouped at the place where they are 
used. Any other plan or arrangement is step-taking and 

Concretely, if the egg-beater, mixing-bowl and nutmeg 
grater are used invariably at the preparing table, then near 
this surface they should be placed or hung. If frying-pans, 
soup-skimmers and ladles are always needed near the stove, 
near the stove they must be grouped. If can-opener, vegeta- 
ble knife and apple corer are always needed near the sink, 
then near the sink they must be hung. Not until a close 
time study is made of the actual number of steps taken in 
each small kitchen task is it possible to realize the great 
amount of "waste motion" caused by failure to group the 
small equipment Why walk ten feet across the kitchen to a 
distant pantry for the tea caddy when both the tea-pot and 
tea-caddy can be grouped near the stove where tea is always 
made? Why walk eight feet to a kitchen table and eight 
feet back again for the breadknife which is always needed 
near the breadbox kept on the cabinet across the room? 

Articles should be grouped and placed nearest the sur- 
faces on which they are used. Saucepans which must 
always be filled with water before being carried to the 
stove, belong near the sink to save steps in filling. Supply 
of clean dish-towels belong as near the sink as possible. 
All the distinctive dishwashing accessories and cleansing 
preparations also have their place near the sink. 



On the other hand, there is a very large number of small 
pieces muffin and cake tins, moulds, meat chopper, meas- 
uring cup, funnels, etc., etc., which peculiarly belong to the 
preparing table or surface. 

Others belong more especially to the serving surface 
where the final touches of mashing, straining, etc., are given 
foods as they are removed from the stove. 

The old idea of keeping dry cereals, sugar, spices, flavor- 
ings and currently used canned goods, in a far-away cup- 
board is also giving way before the efficiency grouping idea. 
If these materials are needed in the daily work of seasoning, 
baking, and other cooking, they too must be grouped near 
the preparing table, or the stove where they are used. The 
exact place for every piece of equipment can easily be 
determined by asking, "Where do I actually use and need 
this article most?" 

A "time-study" made of any particular task under two 
sets of conditions will show surprising differences in time 
and number of steps required. The arrangement of the 
main equipment and the grouping of the small tools will be 
found very greatly to lengthen or shorten each task. Below 
is given the result of such a time-study of the simple task 
of preparing boiled potatoes under two varying arrange- 
ments of equipment. 

In Study I, the pot was kept in the pot-closet; the knife 
was kept in a drawer in the pantry ; there was no special 
garbage arrangement. 

In Study 2, the pot was kept on the shelf adjacent to the 
sink ; the knife was kept on a nail at the vegetable prepar- 
ing surface near the sink; garbage pail was lifted on a 
shelf with the circular opening above as illustrated on 
page 32. Position of storage and stove was the same in 
both cases. 


Paring directly or scraping dishes into pail underneath saves soiling any 

surface. Note knives, parers, graters, etc., directly above working 

surface. (The opening as shown is too large; should be about 

eight inches-.) 





STUDY i. i. Walk to storage. 

2. Return from storage with small basket of potatoes, 

and lay on kitchen table. 

3. Walk from table to pot-closet for pot. 

4. Return from pot-closet to table, on which lay pot. 

5. Walk from table to pantry drawer for knife. 

6. Return from pantry with knife. 

7. Peel potatoes on table surface. 

8. Take pot of potatoes in hand and walk to sink. 

9. Wash potatoes and fill pot with water. 
10. Walk from sink to stove and lay pot on. 

n. Walk from stove to table, place refuse in basket. 

12. Walk from table to sink with refuse and empty 

same into garbage pail on floor. 

13. Take scrub cloth from sink to table, wipe up same. 

14. Return with soiled cloth and knife to sink. 

15. Wash cloth, hang up. Wash knife. 

16. Walk from sink to pantry drawer to replace knife. 

17. Walk from pantry drawer to sink to get basket. 

18. Take small basket back to storage. 

19. Return from storage. 
Time consumed : 5 minutes. 

STUDY 2. i. Walk to shelf adjacent to sink and get pot. 

2. Walk to storage, carrying pot, and fill it with 


3. Return from storage, laying pot directly on vege- 

table preparing surface near sink. 

4. Pick up knife (from nail above this surface). 

5. Pare potatoes directly into pail (soiling no surface). 

6. Wash potatoes and fill pot with water. 

7. Wash and hang up knife (on nail above sink). 

8. Walk with pot and lay on stove. 

Time consumed: less than 2 minutes, not counting actual peeling, 
which would require the same time in each case. 


Study i 5 minutes 19 steps 

2 2 minutes 8 steps 



Other time studies will show equally great differences. 
In no way but by a careful time study can the experienced 
housekeeper convince herself that many of her habits and 
methods are wasteful of time and effort. 

One of the reasons why women have been unwilling to 
follow the grouping idea is their belief that kitchen neatness 
requires the keeping of all utensils and equipment behind 
closed doors or in drawers. This idea perhaps was justi- 
fied when the kitchen served also as the family sitting-room, 
or when the fuel used was so dirty as to make it necessary 
to protect utensils against dust and ashes. But with modern 
fuels of gas, electricity or oil and the complete separation of 
cooking-room from living-room, the kitchen can follow the 
efficient ideals of other workshops. 

The "bench" of the mechanic can serve as a model for 
the kitchen. Here above the working surface, or adjacent 
to it, are strips, pockets and hooks for the holding of every 
tool and supply needed in his particular work. There are 
no doors to open and take up valuable floor space, no waste 
motion pulling out drawers, no confusing or blunting of one 
tool with another. 

The kitchen must follow this workshop ideal. Every 
utensil and tool should have a definite place either on a hook 
of its own or on an open shelf so that it can instantly be 
grasped and used without waste handling. Again, the hang- 
ing of utensils prevents contact and wear. This is espe- 
cially true of a large class of indispensable kitchen tools, 
namely, knives. They are universally "banged" into table 
drawers with the can-opener and the apple corer so that 
their delicate edges become blunted, and consequently give 
poor service. Yet it is just as easy to place them in the 
separate pockets of a chamois or wooden strip over the 
surface on which they are used, thus keeping them in good 


On left, cooking rack of steel with excellent grouping of broilers, sauce- 
pans and small cooking utensils. Notice cook's pots on range and efficient 
grouping of salt, pepper and spices over table section of stove. 


condition, and making it easy to instantly pick out the 
required blade. 

Racks of various kinds permit attractive, exposed group- 
ing. There is the "cook's rack" extending over the range, 
from which skillets and saucepans hang neatly. A similar 
kind of rack is constructed specially for use at the side of 

Courtesy of Mrs. Mary Patterson. 

the stove and is commodious enough to hold many of the 
small pots and tools needed only at this point. A wooden 
rack about 5 by 2 % to 3 feet built of narrow strips and 
mounted on castors will partly replace inconvenient drawers 
and shelves. On such a rack can be hung small saucepans, 
spoons, beaters, knives, etc., which can be moved up to the 
working surfaces, as needed. If painted to match the trim 
of the kitchen it is as attractive as it is useful in applying 
the grouping idea. Or a much smaller rack or set of strips 
can be fastened directly to and over a kitchen table either 


when it is in the center of the kitchen or when placed 
against the wall. If the straight cup hooks are placed at 
regular intervals in these strips, they will accommodate 
many groups of small tools needed at the table. 

The right grouping of small equipment and food supplies 
can easily be made in any kitchen with little or no expense. 


Next in importance to correct grouping is the correct and 
comfortable height for all working surfaces and equipment. 
For years women have stooped their backs over sinks and 
tables that were too low, strained their muscles over ironing 
boards that were too high, bent themselves double peering 
into the oven, or stretched for utensils away out of reach. 
No shelves should be lower than one foot from the floor 
nor higher than six feet; and for small women a com- 
fortable reaching height is between 4j^ and 5^2 feet. 

The sink, as universally installed, is several inches too 
low for the woman to work without bending over, thus 
increasing the strain and fatigue of the already fatiguing 
task of dishwashing. 

The same is true of kitchen tables in the heights com- 

'able Leg TableLeg. 

Iron Dowel Brass 

Extent/on Extent 



monly manufactured, which are from one to three inches 
too low to permit standing and working at them in a 
hygienic upright position. 

While most stoves are high enough for convenient work, 
many of the portable types are also beneath a comfortable 
working level. Although the coal range is the only stove 
necessitating a low oven, manufacturers of ^toves using 
other fuels, such as gas and electricity, have been slow to 
place all ovens, broilers and warming-closets above the 
waist level. Happily, however, the latest models have ovens 
either at the side or above the regular cooking surface, 
which results in more comfort and less fatigue for the 

Even the fireless cooker box should be mounted on a 
frame or stand so that its top surface is practically the 
same height as the usual cooking surface of other stoves, 
which will prevent repeated stooping every time the cooker 
is used. 

No absolute rule can be given for invariable heights be- 
cause not only the height of the worker must be taken 
into consideration, but also the length of her arm, and 
whether she is short or long-waisted, etc. From tests made 
on women of varying heights, the following guide was com- 
piled. This may be used by each worker as a basis for 
determining the exact height suitable to her individual 
needs. But she should also make actual tests herself by 
placing a dishpan or tray on a high stool, raising and low- 
ering with the aid of books of various thicknesses, or some 
other object, until she finds the exact height at which she 
can work without strain either on the arms or back. If the 
working surfaces are to be used by workers of different 
heights (servants or maids) it is best to put them at the 
height convenient for the taller workers and use a small 
platform to make them the right height for shorter women. 


The height of the sinks is given separately from other 
working surfaces because here actual work, such as dish- 
washing, is performed at a level about 2 inches or more 
above the bottom of the sink. On other surfaces the actual 
work, such as peeling potatoes, is done at the exact level 
of the surface itself. 


Sink, Height for Other Height 

Height of Height from Floor Working Surfaces, of Stool, 

Worker to Base of Sink for Standing for Sitting 

5 feet 2g l /2 inches 31^2 inches 22 inches 

5 " i in. 30 32 23 

5 2 " 30^ 32^ 24 

5 " 3 " 3i 33 25 

5 " 4 " 3i/2 " 33/2 " 26 

5 " 5 " 32 34 27 

5 6 " 32^ " 34^4 28 

It will be found generally that there is an inch of dif- 
ference in the height of the stool to each inch of height in 
the worker. 


Another great preventive of strain and fatigue is the 
practice of sitting down to many household tasks. It is 
only custom, or a false fear that they will be considered 
lazy, which makes many women object to sitting down at 
work. A high stool (preferably with an adjustable seat) 
can be used when washing dishes, peeling vegetables, pre- 
paring pastry, and many other tasks. When sitting, a great 
deal of strain is removed from the feet and abdomen of 
the worker. This lessens the possible fatigue of the task, 
and permits the worker to give her entire energy to it, thus 
resulting in quicker and better work, after the sitting habit 
is acquired. 



Adequate lighting and ventilation are two further essen- 
tials to kitchen efficiency. In building, windows and doors 
should be placed in harmony with the working surfaces. 
Too frequently the good light from a window is wasted 
because it does not reach the equipment where it is most 
needed. Very intense light is needed at table, stove and 
sink, yet because windows are not placed so that the light 
falls from a proper angle on these surfaces, the worker is 
all too frequently standing in her own light or the equip- 
ment is in shadow. 

Windows should be placed so as to give a direct light 
over the important working surfaces of table, stove and 
sink. They should preferably be placed high in the walls 
with the sills 42 to 46 inches from the floor. This will 
allow the wall space under them to be utilized to the most 
advantage. It will give better ventilation to the upper part 
of the room and the high sill cannot be used as a "catch-all" 
for bottles, small dishes, etc. The high sill also keeps any 
window curtains out of reach of working surfaces likely 
to soil them. 

The placing of artificial illumination must also be care- 
fully studied. The very common single "drop" in the cen- 
ter of the room is one of the poorest forms. It casts 
shadows and inadequately lights the corners of the room, 
and is almost universally placed so high that it is a strain 
to light it. If either electricity or gas is used, the bulb or 
burner can be enclosed in a bowl of opaque glass and the 
light reflected up to the ceiling in the manner called "indi- 
rect" lighting. This method diffuses the light more over 
the entire room and is less glaring on the eyes. However, 
if the kitchen is large, it is better to use separate wall 
brackets giving direct light at stove, table and sink. "Goose- 


neck" fixtures are manufactured especially for this purpose 
of focusing artificial light directly where needed. If a 
kerosene lamp must be used, the most efficient type is that 
having a "mantle" which permits a strong white light of 
about 40 candle power similar to that given by the Welsbach. 
An identical kind of light is given from lamps using dena- 
tured alcohol with special kinds of wick and similar 



Cross ventilation is essential to keep the kitchen well 
aired and free from odors. Windows in opposite walls, or 
a window opposite a door frequently left open, may be 
sufficient in the small kitchen. Transoms above the door, 
and windows placed high in the walls will give additional 

But the most complete system is to have a special ven- 
tilation flue in the chimney running to the kitchen. If the 
natural current through this flue is not sufficiently strong 
to carry away odors, a small electric fan can be placed in 
this flue at its face and used as needed. If there is no 
special vent flue in the brick chimney, the best plan is to 
place a hood over the stove which will concentrate the 
drafts around the surface of the stove. From this hood a 
pipe can be carried through the wall of the kitchen and 
from there to the top of the roof. This flue should be 
double on the outside and about ten inches in diameter for 
use with a 4-foot stove. Even a gas stove should be in- 
stalled with a flue connection which will lessen the amount 
of heated air, gases and odors in the kitchen. 


The labor-saving kitchen must meet the highest ideals of 
sanitation. Therefore all its surfaces floor, walls, tables, 
etc. should be as non-absorbent, non-porous and as easy 


to clean as possible. What material, then, is best for the 
kitchen floor which receives a heavy daily quota of dirt, 
grease and water? All wood no matter how treated, is 
absorbent of grease, and cracks collect dirt particles. Fre- 
quent scrubbing merely widens the cracks and coarsens the 
wood. For these reasons a wooden floor, even when 
painted, varnished or shellaced, is out of place and unserv- 
iceable in the kitchen. There are three groups of sanitary 
floor coverings with definite points of merit and fault, i. e., 
linoleum, "composition flooring" and tile. 

Inlaid linoleum with the pattern extending through the 
entire thickness is more durable than printed linoleum and 
makes a most satisfactory and inexpensive floor covering. 
So-called "battleship linoleum" comes in a single color with 
a dull, attractive surface, and from tests made by hospitals 
and other institutions, has been proved the most durable and 
satisfactory of any linoleum. 

The laying of linoleum is most important. Unless laid 
by a professional, it is apt to "belly" or the seams will not 
be perfectly joined. Care should be taken to have the 
baseboard joining perfect; the baseboard should be put in 
place after the linoleum is laid, or preferably, a rounded 
metal strip should be used to cover the joining and facilitate 
mopping, or the seams can be cemented. 

Within the last few years great improvement has been 
made in various "composition materials" of asbestos, 
cement, rubber, etc., sold under various names. Generally 
the material comes in a powder form, and is mixed and 
spread after the manner of cement. Two or more coats are 
applied, the first one frequently being applied to metal lath 
and forming a continuous surface with the baseboard, which 
may be made of the same material. These materials come 
in a variety of colors, are resilient and easy to walk on, yet 
non-porous, without cracks and require a minimum of effort 



in cleaning. To be entirely satisfactory they should be 
laid by the manufacturer's own workmen. These floors 
are suitable for pantries, halls, porches and service quarters 
as well. 

Although tile may seem the most sanitary and impervious 
surface for the kitchen floor, experience has shown that its 
chief defects are that it is too hard a surface on which to 
stand continually ; it is also slightly slippery, which makes 
quick walking dangerous and its hard surface is fatal to 
dishes accidentally dropped. It is frequently desirable, 
however, to have a tiled area i l / 2 to 2 feet around the 
stove, with the stove inset, and flush with the tile. This is 
a protection against fire; and it is more sanitary than the 
dust-catching space between stove and floor when the stove 
is mounted on legs. 


As a wall covering, however, tile is ideal because of the 
ease of cleaning, its impervious qualities and constantly 
fresh appearance. Many institutional and commercial 
kitchens have tiled ceilings, walls and floors on which a 
hose can be turned daily if necessary. But for the family 
home a wainscoting of tile is sufficient protection for those 
parts of the wall which receive the hardest use. 

Another good material for wall coverings is the oil-cloth 
wall fabric which can easily be wiped with a cloth. 

Above this wainscoting, plaster in either of its two main 
finishes smooth "hard trowel" or "rough sand" can be 
employed. The entire wall may be finished in hard trowel 
plaster if desired, but the entire surface is not to be recom- 
mended in the rough sand finish which offers too many 
projections for the accumulation of dust and grease. The 
smooth plaster finish can be painted preferably in a "flat" 
paint easily cleaned with a damp cloth. The sand finish 


should be treated with kalsomine and given a fresh annual 
coat. Paper of any kind should never be used on a kitchen 
wall or ceiling, because it puffs loose with heat and steam 
and is unsanitary to a degree. 


The color of these floor and wall surfaces has a more 
important influence on the worker than is sometimes real- 
ized. If some so-called "unattractive" kitchens were care- 
fully analyzed, it would be found that they were unattractive 
largely because of ugly green or hideous blue colorings. 
The woodwork or trim should not be dark; cherry, ma- 
hogany or even golden oak stain is too heavy and somber. 
Pine or birch or maple in natural finish, or painted wood in 
pure ivory white or such tones as "putty," warm gray, light 
apple green, make the kitchen lighter as well as more cheery. 
Similarly, light tones only should be used on walls or ceil- 
ing, and large patterns should be avoided in both floor and 
wall coverings. The ceiling should preferably be dead 
white ; if there is a wainscot, the section above it should 
be a pale shade of the preferred tone ; the wainscoting may 
be still darker and the floor the darkest of all. Good color 
combinations are: (i) ceiling white, above wainscot light 
warm yellow, wainscot buff, floor white and brown, wood- 
work old ivory white; (2) ceiling white, above wainscot 
pale apple green, wainscot medium apple green, floor white 
and green, woodwork putty. Baseboards, and a similar 
height across the bottom of doors, and a small circumfer- 
ence around door knobs may be painted the darkest shade 
of the color used, to conceal wear. 


Wooden surfaces of all kinds must yield to the pressure 
for more perfect sanitation. The exposed wooden kitchen 


table top or drainboard absorbs water, stains, and grease. 
This means wasted effort in continual scrubbing and scour- 
ing; in addition, the wooden surface is marred by having 
heated pots and utensils laid upon it. The working surfaces 
of the labor-saving kitchen must be covered with non- 
absorbent, easily cleaned materials, of which there is a 
wide choice. 

For the preparing table there is a selection of vitrified 
glass, porcelain (baked enamel), monel metal and plate 
glass, all of them sanitary, impervious to grease or water. 
For' the serving table or surface on which it is necessary 
to lay heated objects, either galvanized iron, zinc, monel 
metal or German silver are desirable because they do not 
mar or stain badly, and can be kept clean with a minimum 
of effort. For drain surfaces, zinc, porcelain, German silver 
or copper are practical and sanitary. 


As was said previously, it is better to eliminate the dis- 
connected pantry and build into the kitchen itself perma- 
nent closets and shelving in harmony with the processes of 
work. In order to follow the chain of steps in the clearing 
away process (No. 2) it is necessary to have permanent 
shelves and pot-closet at the left of the sink. This permits 
dishes and pots to be laid away with no walking or carry- 
ing, since such a closet is but an arm's length from the 

Most shelves, as commonly built, have two faults: they 
are too wide, and too far apart. The first fault results in 
a broad shelf on which there are consequently placed a 
double or triple row of articles. Then when one article is 
needed, it is necessary to displace and search behind others, 
which means waste of time and effort. The efficient shelf, 
no matter whether used to hold supplies, dishes, pots or still 


larger utensils, is only wide enough to accommodate one 
article. That is, shelves should be graded in width accord- 
ing to the size of the articles or utensils they are to contain. 
Their width may vary from six inches for a row of pitchers 
or sauce dishes, glasses, etc., to eight inches for jars con- 
taining cereals and small supplies, to ten inches for plates 
and usual size pots and pans. Large pieces like bread- 
mixer, steamer, preserving kettle, etc., may need a shelf 
twelve or fourteen inches. 

Again, shelves too widely apart mean waste space and 
useless effort in reaching. Most shelving can be lowered so 
there is less space between each shelf, which will give more 
shelf space in the same wall area. If possible, the prepar- 
ing surface should be a built-in fixture with shelves and 
closets above and below of these correct sizes and widths 
to economically use the space. Small narrow shelves such 
as one for the tea-pot and tea supply near the stove, or 
broad shelves to hold bread-box, etc., can be placed exactly 
where most step-saving. Two-inch strips can be fastened 
directly under small shelves over the serving surface or 
adjacent to the stove in which straight cup-hooks can be 
screwed at regular intervals. On these can be hung and 
grouped many of the smaller beaters, cook-spoons, mashers, 
etc., so that the shelf and objects under it can be related 
to the working surface near it. 


Composition floorings (cork, cement, asbestos mix- 
tures, etc.), set directly on wood or expanded metal 
lath, per square foot $ .17 to $ .50 

Sanitary cove baseboard, per lineal foot 20 up 

Linoleum, inlaid and battleship (not laid), per square 
yard 1.50 to 3.00 

Tile (floor), per square foot, laid, but not including 
cost of cement foundation 30 up 


Tile (wall, glazed), per square foot, laid, but not in- 
cluding cost of cement foundation 60 up 

Oilcloth fabric (glaze and mercerized). Comes in rolls 

48 inches x 12 yards, per lineal yard 25 to .3<J 

Paint, per coat, per square yard 04 to .06 

Kalsomine, per coat, per square yard 01 to .03 

Zinc (22 gauge metal), per square foot 30 

Galvanized iron (22 gauge metal), per square foot 15 

Copper (22 gauge metal), per square foot 50 

Polished steel (22 gauge metal), per square foot 15 

Monel metal (22 gauge metal), per square foot $1.00 to 1.25 

German silver (22 gauge metal), per square foot 1.85 

Plate glass, per square foot i.oo 

Vitrified glass, per square foot $ .90 to 1.25 

Porcelain enameled steel, per square foot i.oo up 

(Note. The above are pre-war prices; present prices unstable.) 


In the built-in fixture, it is best to allow for bins of 
various sizes for holding flour, sugar, etc., in quantity. 
The most improved type slide forward easily on ball bear- 
ings, and are so made as to tilt with little effort. Bins 
should be lined with zinc or similar metal to keep them 
moisture and insect proof. The point to avoid in the built-in 
drawer is not to have it too deep, as deep drawers cannot 
be kept in order, and it is more difficult to pick up any 
required article. Shallow drawers, three inches deep for 
kitchen ware, and about five inches deep for linen, are most 
satisfactory. Large drawers in center kitchen tables are 
now manufactured on ball bearings so that they can easily 
be pulled out and reached from both sides of the table. 


The three important pieces of fixed equipment in the 
kitchen are sink, stove and refrigerator. Sinks are made 
of various materials, iron, slate, soapstone, enamel ware. 


For the country kitchen where a great deal of work must 
be done, the slate or soapstone is preferable. But the 
needs of the modern kitchen are best met by the attractive- 
looking, white sink of enameled iron. In choosing any sink, 
these are the points to bear in mind: it should be deep 
enough to give ample room for the dishpan and thus avoid 
water splashing over (8-10 inches) ; it should have the back' 
and drainboards an integral part of the sink to avoid crev- 
ices in which dirt might accumulate, and to avoid splashing 

Convenient for dish washing, etc., as hot or cold water may be drawn at will. 

the wall, as occurs when the drains are not protected by 
the splasher back of the main sink ; it should have a con- 
cealed "hanger" attachment rather than be mounted on 
legs which prevent ease in floor mopping; it should have 
a movable faucet nozzle, or have the ordinary faucets 
protected with rubber tips to prevent china breakage. 

The double sink with two compartments makes for ease 
in dishwashing, one being use for washing, the other for 
draining. If the establishment is large, it may be necessary 
to have a separate "vegetable sink" and a deeper, so-called 
"pot sink" in the kitchen, when the table dishes are washed 
in a separate sink in the butler's pantry. For the small 


kitchen a serviceable size is 30x18x8 inches with draining 
surfaces 2 feet long on either side. If there is only one 
drainboard, it should always be at the left. 


In the past few years great changes have been made in 
the kinds of fuel used, and hence in the character of the 
cooking equipment. The familiar kitchen range was gen- 
erally a combination of heating and cooking equipment, as 
the water back attachment heated water for household use 
in addition to the stove doing the actual cooking. A No. 8 
stove which used 2 tons a year of nut coal for cooking only, 
used 4 }/2 tons of coal when connected with the waterback. 

Owing to other changes in our methods of general house- 
hold heating, it is possible and much more efficient to sep- 
arate the heating system entirely from the cooking system, 
and to have the latter under more exact control than is 
possible with a coal range. 

The ideal cooking device is that in which fuel is consumed 
only when actual cooking is in progress, and where the 
fuel can be cut off instantly. This ideal reaches a high 
degree of perfection in stoves using gas, electricity, dena- 
tured alcohol or kerosene, because here the heat can be 
controlled definitely by the operator no actual cooking, no 
actual fuel. In addition, modern science has proved that 
much cooking can be done equally well with "conserved" 
heat. Therefore, the modern kitchen has a choice of stoves 
or devices embodying this principle, such as the insulated 
oven of several gas and electric stoves ; the fireless cooker, 
and combinations of the fireless idea in other stoves operated 
by various fuels. Perhaps the most efficient type of stove 
is the small gas stove with insulated upper oven which 
permits cooking by both direct and radiated heat, with a 
minimum of fuel. 



In every kitchen there should be adequate facilities for 
keeping dishes and foods warm. With the coal range, this 
is easily done because of the radiated heat from the stove 
to the warming shelf above. With a gas stove of the range 
type, the oven may be used to heat dishes and keep foods 
warm. If a gas hot plate is the only stove, it should be 
located so that a perforated metal shelf can be fastened to 
the wall over the stove at a convenient height. This will 
allow the radiated heat and steam to warm whatever dishes 
or towels are placed on the shelf, or a small "portable" 
oven or steam cooker answers the purpose admirably. 

If the kitchen is heated by steam or hot water, a metal 
grill can be fastened over the kitchen radiator, thus serving 
as a shelf on which to dry utensils or keep dishes warm. 
Some radiators are made specially in the "pantry radiator" 
type with two or three decks of coils on which plates may 
be laid. Or the dining-room or pantry radiator may contain 
a small compartment. In large establishments a separate 
"plate warmer" may be built in any size to be heated by 
electricity. Similarly, one of the most improved metal 
kitchen tables has a plate warmer compartment underneath 
heated by current. A larger table which approximates the 
excellent "steam table," seldom seen except in institutions, 
is heated by gas and connected with the steam-heating 


When the cooking arrangements are thus separated from 
the heating of hot water, other provision has to be made. 
One of the most satisfactory and inexpensive plans of inde- 
pendently treating the water supply is by the installation of 
a small heater somewhat like a laundry stove, preferably 
in the basement or cellar, using pea coal. This heater can 


be attached to a boiler and connected with the pipes to the 
kitchen or bathroom. The boiler should always be installed 
vertically (water takes longer to heat in the horizontal posi- 
tion), jacketed with asbestos, and the heater itself covered 
with plastic asbestos to prevent radiation. Such a heater 
can be operated at a cost of $2.00 to $3.00 per month, and 
combines a laundry stove with its use as a water heater. 
If not installed in the laundry, one of the cylindrical type 
of heaters with a magazine fuel feed should be used, as 
these require less attention to operate. 

An independent hot water plant permits of an abundant 
supply of hoter water both summer and winter This plan 
is preferable to having a hot water coil in the furnace or 
other house heater, which at times gives insufficient hot 
water, and at others causes the water to boil ; then the coil 
may rust out or become stopped up, necessitating repairs in 
cold weather. Experiments show that little or no coal is 
saved, for the hot water coil requires as much extra coal 
as is needed to run the independent heater. 

If gas is available and the rate is low, the water supply 
may be heated by one of the several types of "gas heaters" 
now on the market. In some models the heating coils are 
placed outside the boiler; in others within it, or in some a 
cast iron plate or burner heats the boiler by direct contact. 
Types where the heating coils are within the boiler are 
preferable because there is less loss of heat by radiation; 
the coils should be brass or copper in preference to save 
fuel. Some of the latest models are automatic in action 
and keep the water in the boiler at any desired temperature. 
This method of heating the water supply is very clean and 
convenient, and its cost is about $3.00 to $4.00 monthly in 
a medium sized family. 

The so-called "instantaneous" heaters, of which there are 
several makes, operate by an automatic valve which lights 



the gas burners as soon as the hot water faucet is turned 
on ; similarly the flame is extinguished when the valve 
closes, by shutting off the faucet. These heaters are most 
efficient, but are more expensive in their first cost, and some- 
what also in the operating cost, over the simpler gas heater. 

All gas hot water heaters should be 
connected with a flue to the outside 
air, as poisonous carbon monoxide gas 
is often given off. 

Several makes of water heaters 
using kerosene are on the market, but, 
owing to the slowness of kerosene 
fuel, do not give as quick results as 
the gas heater. For homes without 
gas, and where it is not desired to use 
coal, the kerosene heater may be ade- 
quate. The best model on the market 
costing $18.00 has a separate, well- 
jacketed heater, and which is claimed 
by manufacturer's tests to care for 
"two bathrooms, kitchen and laundry, 
the fuel cost being one-half cent per 
hour, with kerosene at 12 cents per gallon." 

The approximate cost of the various water heating device 
is as follows: Coil in furnace, $10.00 to $12.00; coal heater, 
$15.00 to $25.00; outside gas heater, $10.00 to $25.00; boiler 
and inside gas heater, $40.00 ; automatic outside gas heater, 
$50.00; automatic instantaneous gas heater, $150.00 (no 
tank required). The boiler will cost about $14.00 for a 30- 
gallon tank to $20.00 for a ob-gallon tank and the jacket 
for the boiler $5.00. The labor will average $10.00 addi- 
tional. The local plumber will give an exact estimate. 




The third important piece of fixed equipment is the 
refrigerator. Even if a family requires a separate cold 
storage room for storing perishables and containing its 
quantity of preserves, canned goods, etc., a good refriger- 
ator is indispensable in modern kitchen economy. The 
points to be carefully considered in buying are the insula- 
tion, which must consist of adequate layers of non-conduct- 
ing materials (cork, mineral wool, etc.) with a dead air 
space between; there must be sufficient circulation of dry, 
cold air ; the ice chamber should be situated on the side ; 
all compartments should be one piece of sanitary glass or 
enamel with easily removable shelves to facilitate perfect 
cleansing; if possible, there should be a coil under the ice 
chamber and connection with the drinking supply so that 
a constant supply of chilled drinking water is available 
from a tap on the face of the refrigerator. The refrigerator 
should preferably form a permanent part of kitchen con- 
struction, and be built into the wall space so that it can be 
iced from outside. This plan saves the tracking of ice 
delivery into the kitchen and makes it possible to use very 
little ice or none in winter months. If the refrigerator is 
perfectly insulated and made, the modern kitchen temper- 
ature will not affect it. Step-saving ideals demand that the 
refrigerator be near the preparing surface, in order that 
supplies can be withdrawn with little effort. 

In country regions where the ice supply is scarce and 
where many food supplies are kept "down cellar," an ele- 
vator refrigerator will be found most step-saving. This 
device operates on pulleys and counterweights and can be 
easily raised or lowered through the kitchen floor into a 
cold storage closet. It has a small ice chamber and two 
more commodious sections screened with wire netting. 


The so-called "iceless refrigerators" operate in the same 
way through a galvanized iron cylinder to beneath the cel- 
lar floor. Either will keep even milk and butter in good 
condition in the warmest weather. 


Garbage disposal is part of the kitchen problem. In 
the country it may be fed to stock, or in the city it is 
removed by the janitor. Every effort should be made by 
householders to have the municipality adequately handle 
the garbage question. But in some detached homes, where 
the garbage service is inadequate, and where the house is 
piped for gas, it is desirable to install a device for the incin- 
eration of garbage. These appear like small portable stoves, 
are operated by gas, connected with a flue, and so built 
that they can reduce a pailful of garbage to an ash in ten 
or twelve minutes. It is preferable to install them as close 
to the sink as possible so that the sink garbage pail can be 
emptied into it with only a few steps of walking. 

In all cases, garbage should be carefully drained and 
kept as dry as possible. Waxed paper bags may be used 
within the garbage pail, which will keep the pail clean and 
enable the garbage to be handled in a sanitary manner. 


A small built-in fixture which has been found to save 
effort and waste motion is a vegetable preparing table, 
which can be incorporated into different kitchens in various 
ways. From a close study of how vegetables and other 
foods are .prepared at the sink, the usual methods of han- 
dling refuse several times and finally stooping to throw it 
into a garbage pail on the kitchen floor appear wasteful of 
time and energy. A simple board or small table surface 
can be extended from the right drain. In this a circular 


opening about eight inches in diameter should be cut and 
the whole surface covered with zinc or other metal. Under 
this board a small shelf must be placed at a sufficient dis- 
tance to allow the garbage pail to rest on it and permit the 
cover to be removed easily. The method of using it is to 
bring vegetables to the adjacent sink, and wash them; 
then instead of peeling them on a surface directly, the lid 
of the garbage pail can be removed and the worker peel 
or prepare over the opening so that the refuse falls at once 
into the pail without any handling whatever. If small pre- 
paring tools are hung on cup hooks over this surface, the 
whole will form a serviceable vegetable preparing outfit. 
If the garbage pail is kept in proper sanitary condition, 
there is no unpleasantness attached to this labor-saving 
method. If this refuse table is placed near the right of the 
sink where the dishes should be scraped, the refuse from 
the plates also can be scraped directly through this open- 
ing into the pail, thus saving the unsanitary handling with 
a sink strainer, etc., as commonly done. 


In choosing the small equipment, it is better to buy too 
little than too much. The first step taken in putting a 
certain kitchen on an efficiency basis was to dispose of half 
of the twenty-three saucepans and six egg-beaters or whips 
found in the pantry. Too many women mistakenly over- 
buy small equipment, which takes up room, requires addi- 
tional care in cleaning, and duplicates itself. 

Here are the points to observe in buying utensils and 
small equipment: 

(1) Right and exact size and shape for purpose needed. 

(2) Right material for purpose needed. 

(3) Keep shapes and colors uniform and harmonious. 


(4) Choose utensils with handles an integral part. 

(5) Avoid "seconds," "three-in-one" tools, poorly fin- 
ished articles with rough edges, etc. 

(6) Select tools without complicated parts, which will 
make washing easier. 

(7) Select utensils that are comfortable to hold, to grasp 
and to handle; and 

(8) that it will be a profitable investment for the price 
paid and the amount of use. 

Nothing is more essential before purchasing pots and 
pans than to measure and find out the best sizes for the 
needs of your particular family. One reason for excess 
equipment is that the required size was not studied before 
purchasing, and hence a great number of sizes had to be 
bought. The shape is important because broad, shallow 
utensils have more surface exposed to the heat and hence 
heat faster, which helps in economy of fuel. The tall, nar- 
row utensil should therefore not be chosen. 

"Bail" handles become too hot, as they hang at the side ; 
hollow metal or black rubberoid handles in one piece allow 
easiest and safest handling. 

Lids should not be fitted with a ring or separate wooden 
knob, which may work loose from the nut ; the most durable 
method is to have a strap-shaped metal knob welded to the 
lid. Saucepans and skillets should be chosen with a lip 
on either side to facilitate easy pouring. Utensils should 
be free from seams and crevices in which food particles 
may collect. 

Just as there are different kinds of cooking methods, so 
there are different metals and materials which are best 
suited to each particular purpose. Different metals are 
adapted to different degrees of heat. They also affect 
chemically certain food elements cooked in them. The 


difficulty of cleaning each metal should also be considered. 

ENAMEL OR AGATE WARE. Here a vitreous material is 
melted and baked on to a mould of iron or steel of the 
required shape. This gives light weight utensils of smooth, 
easily cleaned finish. It does not resist a high temperature, 
but "chips" when foods go dry. The gray finish seems 
more durable than either the white or blue and white, 
though different grades vary greatly. It is most suitable 
for small bowls, pitchers, saucepans, and for simple stew- 
ing and boiling. 

IRON. Heavy in weight, but easy to clean when used 
for some time. Resists very high temperature. Suitable 
for frying, roasting and baking, and very large boiling 
kettles. Sheet iron is a thinner quality used for baking 
sheets, bread pans, etc. 

STEEL. Resists high temperatures. Moderately hard to 
clean. Used for same purposes as iron, also tea-kettle, 
frying pans, etc. 

TIN. Does not endure high temperature. Discolors 
quite readily. Is light in weight, and best for cake pans, 
colanders and similar small pieces. The best grades are 
cheapest in the end. 

ALUMINUM is light in weight, does not radiate heat 
quickly, fairly easy to clean, affects acid foods slightly and 
is seriously affected by water containing alkalies. Made 
in seamless shapes, suitable for all purposes, but not best 
for frying, griddles, etc. 

EARTHENWARE. Moderate weight, endures moderately 
high temperature, easy to clean, impervious surface, suitable 
for slow cooking of all kinds bowls, custard cups, pudding 
dishes, casseroles, etc. 

WOODEN WARE. Use confined to meat, vegetable and 
pastry boards, mashers and wooden mixing spoons. 



One of the reasons so many kitchens have a cluttered 
untidy appearance is that no two pots or utensils are the 
same shape or finish. If a saucepan of a certain style is 
decided on, use the same style in saucepans of all sizes. 
If gray agate has been the material chosen for one kettle, 
do not choose others of white, blue or mottled. If some 
mixing bowls are yellow, do not pick out others that are 
white or dark brown. A harmonious row of utensils as 
to shape and color has much to do with making attractive 
appearing shelves. 


The housewife should be wary of buying apparently 
cheap tools. "Seconds" may be uneven so the bottom does 
not sit squarely, or, as in frying pans, have a raised surface 
in the center so that grease sinks to edges and makes unsat- 
isfactory frying. Agate-ware bargains commonly have an 
exposed portion of the under-metal, which consequently 
greatly shortens the life of the pan. The "three-in-one" or 
combination tool is seldom a success. Just as there is 
no satisfactory combination saw, plane and chisel for the 
workman, so there is no practical can-opener, grater and 
parer or other combination. It is much wiser to buy the 
best grade of a particular standard tool rather than to 
invest money in "novelties," for which extravagant claims 
are made. 

There is no one standard list of equipment that will fit 
every family, because of differences in the main equipment, 
in fuel used, in table standards and number in family. 
Here is given a list of utensils and fuels for a family of 
six, where all cooking is done at home on a small gas range 
with fireless cooker attachment. If a kitchen cabinet is 
part of the fixed equipment, it will contain breadbox, bread- 


board, spice jars, etc. Similarly some of the pieces may 
be unnecessary in certain families. The prices given are 
average for the best grade of materials. 


PREPARING TOOLS (Grouped near kitchen cabinet or preparing surface) 

2 half-pint glass measuring cups each $ .10 

i graduated quart measure, enamel, or .35' 

i graduated quart measure, tin ' .10 

i serrated bread-knife .50 

1 biscuit cutter, tin , . . . .10 

2 case knives .20 

2 kitchen forks .15 

i large sabatier kitchen knife 90 

I small sabatier kitchen knife .45 

i egg beater and cream whip combined 50 

3 earthenware mixing bowls, 8, 6 and 5 in. spread 

20C, I5C, ,IO 

4-sided grater .25 

flour dredger 10 

flour sifter 25 

small funnel, enamel, or .20 

small funnel, tin 08 

glass rolling-pin .50 

i pastry board 40 

1 small meat board 25 

2 large wooden spoons each .15 

i spatula, steel 50 

i each standard tablespoon and teaspoon .23 

i meat chopper, stationary 1.25 

PREPARING TOOLS (Grouped near sink) 

1 can-opener each 15 

2 vegetable preparing knives 20 

I curved blade fruit knife :?5 

i glass lemon squeezer i o 

i apple corer 15 

I corkscrew )O 


2 vegetable scrub brushes each .05 

i pair of scissors .45 

i pineapple snip 25 


skimmer, enamel 20 

small deep skillet, 8-in. spread 

large iron skillet 10-in. spread 

each tea and coffee pot with supply jars 

large iron cooking spoon .15 

long-handled cooking fork .15 

ladle (enamel) 25 

pancake turner .15 

wire potato masher 25 

i 3-mesh sieve or colander .75 

i set skewers 15 

i tea kettle with boiler insert, 5 qts. (aluminum) .... 5.00 

1 tea kettle without boiler insert, 5 qts. (enamel ware) 2.00 

COOKING UTENSILS (Grouped near kitchen cabinet) 

Agate num 

2 hemispherical 6-hole gem pans each $ .50 $ .75 

3 bread pans, 9x6x3 40 .70 

2 layer cake tins, square or round 30 .45 

2 pie tins, 10 inches, i deep, i shallow 30 .35 

i deep earthen pie plate 25 

I china enamel jelly mould, i l / 2 pts. to i qt... .50 ;. 

I iron baking pan, 12 x 16 45 

I earthen baking dish, i l / 2 qts., 9-inch spread. . .30 

(pudding, scalloped dishes etc.) 
i large earthen casserole, 3 qts., stews, soups . . .50 

6 earthen custard cups 05 

I small covered roaster, 15x11 3.25 4.50 

COOKING UTENSILS (Grouped near sink) 

i handled saucepan, i l / 2 qts. cream gravies, 
boiling eggs, etc 60 .85 

i handled saucepan, 3 qts. cocoa, warming 
milk, heating canned goods 75 1.05 


2 4-qt. saucepans potatoes, vegetables, cereals .85 1.25 
i 8-qt. saucepan spinach, ham, corn, etc 70 1.65 


i clock i.oo 

i covered garbage pail (near sink) , 45 

i wire rubbish burner (near sink) 1.25 

1 match-box (near stove) .10 

2 oval flannel pot-holders (near stove) each '.05 

i cooking thermometer (near stove) i.oo 

i handled asbestos mat (near stove) 10 

Kitchen salt and pepper (near stove) 10 

i toaster (near stove) .25 

i pan-hanging kitchen scale (near cabinet) 2.50 

Glass cereal jars, spice jars (near cabinet) 


Card recipe cabinet, bill-hook (near cabinet) 

Kni f e sharpener 

Coffee mill 

i ice-pick and shaver .25 

i enameled egg holder, glass butter jar each .25 

1 large-figured calendar 

Kitchen dishes, pitchers, etc 

White enameled plates and dishes exclusively for 
ice-box use 

high stool on castors 1.50 

tray i.oo 

DISHWASHING EQUIPMENT (Grouped near sink) 

square dishpan on feet 1.50 

wire dish drainer $ .50 to 1.25 

large, I small dishmop each .05 

wire pot-brush .10 

wooden plate scraper 25 

sink strainer 25 

soap-shaker 10 

wire faucet soap-dish 25 

sink-brush and scoop < .10 

6 linen, glass and silver, towels 

2 mesh pot-rags for wiping pots and surfaces, .each .15 
6 crash dishtowels 

Soaps, cleansers, etc 


Other pieces of equipment might be the portable steamer, 
bread-mixer, cake-mixer, broiler, if not in connection with 
the range, pastry outfit, bread-slicer, cleaver, saw, cherry- 
stoner, etc., which would find a useful place in some family, 
but scarcely be needed in others. Equipment must be chosen 
having the needs of the particular family in mind rather 
than blindly following a set list. 


One more group of equipment must be mentioned in con- 
nection with every kitchen, and that is the more business- 
like helps, of which there are several. The card cabinet 
filing cookbook which will be described in detail later must 
have a place on the shelf above the preparing surface. 
This makes for neatness, accuracy and ease in following 
recipes. A drawer containing the cards can be attached 
to a shelf at about the level of the eyes with a square of 
glass protecting the cards as used. A bill-hook will keep 
sales checks and other memoranda until wanted. A large 
envelope should be used to contain the direction tags which 
come with many pieces of equipment and which are so nec- 
essary to turn to from time to time. If the calendar is 
large and distinct enough, the daily deliveries of milk, ice 
or bread or other memos can be placed in the square around 
each date. A kitchen reminder list of some kind, and a 
separate pad with pencil attached to string, on which to 
write daily menus, is invaluable. A small "bulletin-board," 
possibly a slate, will also be found helpful to outline work, 
suggestions or reminders. 


It is preferable to have uniform glass jars to contain 
cereals, spices and other dry food supplies like powdered 
sugar, beans, cornstarch, etc. Glass makes the best con- 


tainer because then it is possible to see always the exact 
amount on hand. All containers should be air and moisture 
proof and have lids or stoppers that are easy to adjust. 
Quart, pint and half-pint jars come in various shapes, 
some with excellent sliding metal tops, which permit easy 
opening. The square glass containers used in pharmacies 
with solid glass plug stopper are equally excellent for cof- 
fee, tea, rice, etc. All containers and all shelves should 
be plainly labeled, and one can obtain attractive labels, 
square or oval, with gummed backs in all sizes for every 
need. The kitchen is now following the laboratory in its 
sanitary, systematic storing of supplies in glass with plainly 
marked labels. 



1. Draw a diagram of your kitchen, pantries, etc., showing 

position of stove, sink, refrigerator, work table, shelves, 
doors, windows, etc. Let one-fourth inch in the plan 
equal one foot in the kitchen. 

2. Draw a duplicate sketch rearranging this kitchen so far 

as possible in accordance with the suggestions of the 

3. Show the "routing" on these two plans (A) for prepar- 

ing and (B) for clearing away a meal. Estimate the 
distance and number of steps saved by the second 

4. Get estimates from carpenters, plumbers, decorators, 

etc., of how much the various changes and improve- 
ments would cost. Give the order in which you would 
like to have these changes made. 

5. Tell what you have already accomplished in the better 

grouping of small equipment and supplies ; also of any 
other suggestions you have carried out. 

NOTE. Those taking the correspondence course will be 
supplied with a Report Blank having cross section lines, which 
are of assistance in drawing the sketches. 




CONDITIONS in no two homes are exactly alike ; in 
one the family may number six or more ; in another 
be only three. The location, whether city apartment, 
detached suburban house, or isolated country farm, also 
greatly affects the kind and extent of the housework. The 
house construction itself either increases or lessens the 
amount of work to be done. The hours of meals ; whether 
or not there are children or invalids in the family ; all these 
factors have a bearing upon the plans and methods of daily 

Letters by the hundred come to my desk, all bearing a sim- 
ilar plaint that women like housework, are fond of some 
special branch like cooking or sewing, but that they do not 
seem to be able to "get done" and have any time to them- 
selves. In other words, the woman with the small family 
and the woman with the large family have the same prob- 
lem not how to do any special task, but how to plan and 
work out a schedule of all tasks; how to relate work and 
apportion it so that it shall progress smoothly with as little 
interruption as possible. t 

"My work is so different every day, and there are so many 
separate kinds of tasks that I don't see how it is possible to 



make a definite plan of daily work, or a 'schedule,' as you 
call it," some women have said. 

But it is just because there are different tasks that a 
schedule is needed. If a woman were doing nothing but the 
same thing without interruption from morning until night, 
there would be no use for a plan of work. There is only 
need of a plan when there are several pieces of varying 
work to be done at different hours with different tools. 
Then it becomes essential to arrange these varying tasks in 
order and on time, so that the worker may proceed with the 
least amount of friction and effort. 


While it may appear that conditions vary greatly in any 
two homes, when we compare all the tasks done daily, we 
see that no matter how large or small the home, or what 
the number in the family, etc., the tasks themselves remain 


Cooking and serving of 3 meals Laundry washing and ironing 

a day Mending or sewing 

Dish and pot-washing Thorough cleaning of house 

Bed-making and bedroom care Window, silver or metal cleaning 

Light cleaning of living-room, Special cooking or baking 

stairs, hall, kitchen, bath and Refrigerator, pantry or closet 
porch cleaning 

Marketing and ordering of sup- 

Every schedule or work-plan has two objects : 

(1) The order of work. 

(2) The time of work. 

The order of 'work is by far the most important, and the 
thing that must be determined first. The reason for so 
much "nerves" and useless effort is solely to be found in the 
lack of order in the work-plan. The time at which a particu- 


lar task is done is secondary and can be decided only after 
the order is arranged and provided for. 


The first thing to do in making a schedule is to follow the 
principle which other executives follow, namely: use the 
head first, and with pencil and paper write down the few 
absolute conditions around which the schedule must center. 
For instance, the first facts to be set down would be the 
hours of meals, as these must be definite, and on them de- 
pend the cooking and some of the other work. Next, write 
down the order of the regular daily tasks in the way you 
think they will go best in your particular home; whether, 
for example, it will be better to wash all the breakfast 
dishes, straighten the kitchen, and start some cooking for 
lunch, before going upstairs to make the beds ; or whether 
to merely put away food and scrape the dishes, proceed to 
making the beds, doing light cleaning, and return to start 
lunch later, doing breakfast and lunch dishes together. What 
is the best order only the individual worker can determine 
for her individual case. By watching yourself at work, by 
counting how long one plan of work takes versus a second 
plan, and which of the two seems to save the most inter- 
ruption, most trotting, the best plan can finally be worked 

In making out the daily schedule, the schedule of weekly 
or special tasks must be considered at the same time, because 
some of the special tasks are done each day. For instance, 
in planning both the cooking and cleaning of Monday or 
Tuesday, we must consider whether or not the laundry is to 
be done on either of these days. Again, in planning the daily 
schedule for Friday or Saturday, we shall have to take into 
account the special thorough cleaning of the house, special 
cooking, etc. In other words, there is no such thing as a true 


daily schedule, but rather a schedule of every day, since the 
entire week's tasks must be considered at once. 

Much of the confusion of unscheduled work arises be- 
cause too many things are crowded into the one day, while 
other days have too little. The schedule aims to prevent 
just this unevenness in work. It tries to consider all the 
tasks, daily and weekly, and then group and arrange them 
in such a way as to have the work evenly distributed over 
the entire week. Very often work is so poorly planned that 
suddenly a woman finds it "all piled up" and herself facing 
the task of an excessive load of work at one time. Some 
women, by temperament, like to work "by spurts," but it has 
been found that the smoothest housework is that which has 
its definite task done regularly so that there never are 
periods of overloading. 

Without a schedule it too frequently happens that the 
worker allows an unexpected piece of work to interrupt and 
confuse her entire day. For instance, during her morning's 
work a woman might be just ready to leave the kitchen and 
go upstairs to make the beds. But she suddenly sees that 
the breadbox is surprisingly full of stale and even mouldy 
bread. She stops to give the box a thorough scalding. She 
notices then that the entire pantry seems unusually disor- 
derly. A "spasm" of cleaning fever seizes her, and she 
decides that the pantry right then and there needs a thorough 
cleaning. One thing leads to another, and before she 
knows it the entire morning is given over to this unexpected 
task. When she notices the clock she sees that the cleaning 
and bedmaking have been neglected and lunch preparation 
entirely forgotten. It takes her the whole day "to catch up." 
The schedule way would have provided for a special pantry 
cleaning on some definite time, and never allowed the routine 
to be so interrupted. 


So many women have said, "Oh, I couldn't bear" to do my 
housework like factory work. I want to rest when I want 
to, and to do things as I feel like it." Let it be understood 
that a schedule is not a treadmill, and does not mean per- 
petual work without rest. On the contrary, every schedule 
must contain a definite "rest" period. The worst opponents 
of the schedule plan are those women who insist on working 
"till they drop." Furthermore, the schedule plan is the only 
one which forces regular rest or recreation periods. Its 
whole idea is simply, plan what you are going to do, do it, 
and then rest; instead of not knowing what you are going 
to do, resting or stopping when you feel like it, and never 
knowing when you are going to get done. In a certain fac- 
tory in Massachusetts girls test the delicate parts of ball- 
bearings. The work is so trying that every two hours they 
are forced to stop for ten minutes in which they can talk, 
leave work, or do what they like. In another immense 
organization employing thousands of clerks, fifteen minutes 
is given during the forenoon as an intermission. Nurses and 
workers in many other lines have definite "time off." But 
only by assigning definite hours for work, can you also 
assign definite hours of rest. For the homemaker, the sched- 
ule should provide a short "rest period" in the forenoon, and 
a longer one in the afternoon. 


While, as was said, it is not possible to give one type 
schedule that will apply to any and all conditions, here is a 
work schedule carefully planned for a week for a woman 
who does all her own work in a family of 5, the 3 children 
going to school (but coming home at noon) ; husband's 
shirts being sent to laundry. The house is a detached, 
7-room suburban cottage ; the fuel used gas, with coal water 



Without Labor-Saving Equipment 


6:00- 6:30 Rise and dress; start water heater 

6:30- 7:00 Prepare breakfast 

7:00- 7:30 BREAKFAST 

7 130- 8 130 Wash dishes ; straighten kitchen ; inspect icebox ; plan 
meals for Monday and Tuesday 

8 130- 9 :oo Prepare towards lunch 

9:00-10:00 Bedrooms, bath and hall cleaned; sort and prepare 

soiled linen and laundry 
10:00-11:00 Thorough downstairs cleaning 
ii :oo-n :3O Rest period 
11:30-12:00 Serve lunch 
12:00- i :oo LUNCH 

i :oo- 3 :oo Lunch dishes ; prepare cooking for Monday and Tues- 
day ; mop kitchen 

3 :oo- 4 :oo Sewing and mending 

4:00- 4:30 Soak clothes and prepare for next day's washing 

4:30- 5:30 Rest period; play with children; walk, recreation or 

5 :3O- 6 :oo Prepare supper 

6:00- 7:00 SUPPER 

7:00- 7:30 Wash dishes 


6:00- 6:30 Rise and dress; put on boiler 

6 :3O- 7 :oo Prepare breakfast 

7:00- 7:30 BREAKFAST 

7 :3O- 8 :oo Stack dishes ; make beds 

8 :oo-i i :3O Washing 

11:30-12:00 Rest period 

12:00- i :oo LUNCH (prepared day before) 

I :oo 2 :3O Wash breakfast and lunch dishes ; clear up laundry 

2 :3O- 4 :oo Take in clothes ; fold, sprinkle, lay away 

4:00- 5:30 Rest period 

5 :3O- 6 :oo Prepare supper 

6:bo- 7:00 SUPPER 

7:00- 7:30 Wash dishes 



6 :oo- 6 :30 Rise and dress ; start water heater 

6 :3O- 7 :oo Prepare breakfast 

7:00- 7:30 BREAKFAST 

7:30-8:30 Wash dishes; inspect icebox; plan meals; start iunch 

8:30- 9:00 Make beds; light cleaning 

9 :oo-i2 :oo Ironing 

12:00- i :oo LUNCH 

1 :oo- 2:00 Finish ironing; put away clothes 

2 :oo- 3 :oo Wash dishes ; straighten kitchen 

3 :oo- 4 :oo Rest period 

4 :oo- 5 :oo Market ; walk 
5:30- 6:00 Prepare supper 
6:00- 7:00 SUPPER 

7:00- 7:30 Wash dishes 


6:00- 6:30 Rise and dress; start water heater 

6 130- 7 :oo Prepare breakfast 

7:00- 7:30 BREAKFAST 

7 :3O- 8 :3O Wash dishes ; straighten kitchen ; plan meals 

8:30- 9:00 Make beds 

9:00-11:30 Bedrooms and closets cleaned 

11:30-12:00 Rest period 

12 :oo- i :oo LUNCH 

i :oo- 2 :oo Wash dishes ; prepare vegetables toward supper 

2:00- 3:30 Upstairs windows cleaned (Up and down stairs win- 
dows alternately each week) 

3:30- 4:00 Silver polished 

4 :oo- 5 :30 Rest period 

5 :3O- 6 :oo Prepare supper 
6:00- 7:00 SUPPER 

7:00- 7:30 Wash dishes 


6 :oo- 6 .-30 Rise and dress ; start heater 

6:30- 7:00 Prepare breakfast 

7:00- 7:30 BREAKFAST 

7 :3O- 8 :30 Wash dishes ; straighten kitchen ; plan meals 


8 :30- 9 :oo Make beds 

9:00-11:30 Downstairs cleaning 

ii :3O-I2 :oo Rest period 

12:00- i :oo LUNCH 

1 :oo 2 :oo Wash dishes ; start supper 

2 :oo- 3 :30 Clean refrigerator, pantry, kitchen, drawers 

3 :oo- 5 :3O Rest period; marketing 
5 :3O 6 :oo Prepare supper 

6:00- 7:00 SUPPER 
7:00- 7:30 Wash dishes 
7 :30- 8 :oo Set bread 


6:00- 6:30 Rise and dress; start heater 

6 :3O- 7 :oo Prepare breakfast 

7:00- 7:30 BREAKFAST 

7 :3O- 8 :oo Make beds 

8 :oo- 8 130 Wash dishes 

8 :3O-i 1 130 Special cooking, and baking 

11 :3O-i2 :oo Rest period 

12 :oo- i :oo LUNCH 

1 :oo- 2 :oo Wash dishes ; start supper 

2 :oo- 3 :3O Clean stove ; wipe kitchen and porch 

3 '30- 5 '30 Rest period 

5 130- 6 :oo Prepare supper 
6:00- 7:00 SUPPER 
7:00- 7:30 Wash dishes 

(Good hot dinner Saturday night; light or cold meals Sunday) 

From the foregoing schedule it will be seen that both 
daily and weekly special tasks are provided for ; that there 
is a definite rest period every afternoon and generally in 
the morning. It will also be noticed that there are certain 
units or groups of work done together. For instance, the 
period when the lunch dishes are washed is used for vegeta- 
ble preparation so that vegetables and sometimes dessert for 
the night meal can be cooking and watched while the dishes 
are washed. This considerably lessens the time necessary 


for supper preparation and allows a longer free period in 
the afternoon. 

It will be seen also that Tuesday and not Monday is given 
to washing. This plan has several advantages. Sunday 
visitors generally leave the house in confusion and the 
woman more tired. Monday washing also means soaking the 
clothes some time on Sunday, which is not desirable. The 
Tuesday washing plan allows for a thorough brushing-up of 
the entire house on Monday, a sorting and soaking clothes, 
preparing shirts to be sent to laundry, and a double cooking 
so that there will be practically no cooking on Tuesday. 

Marketing is allowed for three times a week, but if it can 
be done once a week, so much the better. Notice that ice- 
box inspection and meal planning take place immediately 
after breakfast, the menus then being written down on a 
kitchen pad. This schedule gives simply order of work 
without attempting any very special timing of any one task, 
nor does it consider the work assisted by any labor-savers. 


In the above schedule has been shown how one definite 
task was taken up after another, or, as it is called, "routed." 
Now, this routing depends somewhat on house construction. 
In planning the cleaning particularly, the arrangement of 
the rooms should be studied. By starting work in one room 
and proceeding to others in a given order, saving of time 
and steps can be made. The following diagram will show 
the easier way to clean a given set of rooms and the more 
step- taking plan which might have been followed if the 
house construction had not been studied. This is true not 
only of the work itself but particularly in regard to the 
handling of utensils and tools. Lack of a definite order of 
work makes for double or even triple handling, which is 
altogether unnecessary. 


Method. Worker gets tools from tool closet (1), and walks down hall 
and begins on living room (2) ; returns with trash to kitchen (3), and 
walks to dining room (4) ; after cleaning it, again returns to kitchen with 
trash, and proceeds to clean the study (5) ; she walks back to kitchen 
again, and last cleans hall (6), ending by bringing back tools and last 
refuse to kitchen again, before taking the final walk back to tool closet (1). 
This is not an exaggeration, but the method used by a so-called "good 


M ethod. Worker gets tools from tool closet (1), and proceeds direct to 
study (2) ; from study through door to parlor (3) ; across parlor hallway 
to dining room (4) ; she then begins at upper end of hallway (5), and 
cleans its length back to the door opening on rear porch, carrying all 
waste and tools back directly to service porch (6). Note that this method 
eliminates all tracking to kitchen and results in about two-thirds less 
unnecessary steps and walking. 



As was indicated, laundry to be sent away was gathered 
and made into a bundle Monday morning. If at the same 
time the bundles were carried directly near the back door, 
they would be right at hand when the laundry man came for 
them. So much unnecessary trotting is due solely to the 
fact of running upstairs or going after some article which 
should have been carried directly to the place from which 
it is finally to be handled. Another minor detail is the 
emptying of garbage, and cleaning of the pail. If this is not 
provided for, other work will be interrupted by this unpleas- 
ant task. In general, it seems best to empty it after the 
lunch dishes and vegetable preparing for night have been 
done, washing the pail and setting to air until night. 

Similarly with lamps if their cleaning and care must be 
included in the work schedule. This is a definite daily task 
and should be fitted in and not left as an afterthought or 
when this unpleasant piece of work might interrupt other 
clean tasks. 

Again, a very small task which often causes much unneces- 
sary dirt is the emptying of waste baskets. So frequently the 
wrong plan is followed of carrying baskets, tools, mops, etc., 
and dumping them into the kitchen when their ultimate 
destination is somewhere else. Again and again, it has been 
noticed that on a general cleaning day waste, trash, cleaning 
tools have all been brought to the kitchen when they might 
just as well have been taken to their rightful closet or rub- 
bish box without tracking through the kitchen at all. Making 
the kitchen a general dumping ground means that additional 
work and handling must be done in the kitchen, thus wasting 
time and effort. 

Another way in which many minutes are wasted is because 
of a lack of definite understanding in regard to tradesmen 


and deliveries. For instance, it is most inefficient to have 
the iceman call every morning inquiring whether you need 
ice, if you need ice only three times a week. Make a point 
of looking at the ice supply at a definite morning hour, and 
hanging out a card so that the iceman can deliver without 
interrupting you at all. Plan definitely when you want 
tradespeople to call and insist that they do not call at other 
times. The special shelf near the kitchen or rear door on 
which supplies may be laid has been spoken of. Give orders 
that bundles, articles, etc., shall be left here with as little 
interruption as possible. Keep a supply of change in the 
kitchen. Running upstairs to a pocketbook, even once a 
day every day in the week, runs into enough time in a year 
to read several best sellers ! 


The type schedule given above will not fit every family. 
There is the family with younger children or babies. Their 
care will have to be provided for, and the special baby 
washing, naps, airing, etc. Such a schedule for one day 
might work out as follows : 


(One small baby on 3-hour feeding period; small house or flat) 
6 130- 7 :oo Rise and dress ; give baby morning feeding 
7:00- 7:30 Breakfast. (Uncooked cereal, or cereal cooked in 

fireless. Table set night before) 
7:30- 8:00 Clear table; stack dishes; plan meals for the day; put 

on water for baby's bath 

8 :oo- 9 :oo Bathe baby, feed and put to sleep ; pick up after bath ; 

straighten bedroom 

9 :oo-io :oo Prepare baby's gruel, sterilized milk, etc. ; wash baby 

napkins while watching food 
(Baby naps 9:00-11:00) 
10:00-11:00 Clean living-rooms, hall, etc., and dress ready to take 

baby for morning airing while marketing 
11:00-12:00 Outdoors with baby while marketing 



12 :oo- i :oo Return for lunch and baby feeding 

i :oo~ 2 :3O Wash combined breakfast and lunch dishes ; prepare 

vegetables, dessert and meat, if possible, for evening 

meal ; brush up kitchen ; empty garbage ; sweep porch 

(Baby awake and playing outdoors, if possible, from 

i~3 J at 3 o'clock feeding and sleep until 4) 
2 130- 3 :oo Iron baby clothing 

3 :oo- 4 :oo Rest period ; preferably nap with baby while it is asleep 

4 :oo- 5 :oo Afternoon airing 

5 :oo- 5 130 Start supper 

5 :3O- 6 :oo Put baby to sleep with night feeding 

6 :oo- 7 130 Own supper ; supper dishes washed ; table set for 

breakfast following morning 
(Baby's last feeding 10 P. M.) 

Similarly, the family with an invalid or where meals are 
taken at very irregular hours, as by many professional men ; 
or the many country conditions where the care of stock, 
garden, etc., must be included. In each case, the schedule 
must be built to meet and fit the essential needs of the par- 
ticular family. It must always be kept in mind that the 
schedule in itself is worthless; and that it is useful only as a 
means to an end that the schedule must fit the family, and 
not that the family be made uncomfortable or be moulded 
over to fit an iron-clad housework plan. 

We have spoken of the order of work and its importance 
as the backbone on which the development of the schedule 
rests. We now want to think about the timing of various 
tasks in order that we can arrange a more closely-knit, exact 
schedule. Every task represents a number of motions and 
effort, and hence time. On study we find that there is one 
best, shortest way of doing a task under a given set of cir- 
cumstances. Finding out this best, shortest way and reduc- 
ing it as nearly as possible to a habit is called "standard- 
izing" it 


To standardize any task we must study how we do it and 
then see if we cannot improve and shorten this former time 
of work. Bed-making, dishwashing, cleaning, especially, are 
purely routine pieces of work and can easily be standard- 
ized. Let us take dishwashing. 


When we say "dishwashing," we commonly think of a 
single household task. But when closely analyzed and made 
the subject of a time or motion study, we see that it is com- 
posed of several parts or steps, each with different motions, 
and generally performed with different tools, as follows : 

(1) Scraping waste from surface of china, agate 

or other kind of dish or utensil. 

(2) Stacking or arranging dishes on surface adja- 

cent to sink, preparatory to washing. 

(3) Actual washing with water, soap or other 

cleanser, with aid of cloth, mop or other me- 
chanical means. 

(4) Rinsing dishes with clear water. 

(5) Wiping dishes with towel or equivalent drying. 

(6) Laying away dishes on or in respective shelves 

and cupboards. 

The efficiency of the whole process of "dishwashing" can 
be improved only by increasing the efficiency of each step. 

From careful experiments made with dishwashing over a 
period of two months and analysis of each of the six steps 
in the dishwashing process, the following results were 
obtained : 


Number of dishes 50 50 

Scraping and stacking 7 minutes 7 minutes 

Washing and rinsing n " 10 " 

Wiping 13 2 

Laying away 8 4 

TOTAL TIME 41 " 23 


In both tests the number of dishes washed was the same. 
But in Test B the conditions were changed. First, a wire 
drainer was substituted for a tray which entirely eliminated 
the hand wiping; then shelves for dishes were placed adja- 
cent to the sink instead of in a pantry 18 feet distant, which 
considerably reduced the time of the laying-away step, and 
thus reduced the total process from 43 to 23 minutes, or 
nearly one-half the time. 

From many time-studies similar to the above, the follow- 
ing general conclusions were reached : 

(1) The "height of the sink must be adjusted to the 

height of the worker, and be sufficiently 
high so that she can work without the slight- 
est stooping. 

(2) The depth of the sink must be such as to allow 

ample accommodation for the dishpan with 
sufficient surface above to prevent sloshing 
of water over the edge and on person of 

(3) Stack surface must be to right of sink, drain 

surface to left for right-handed worker. 
This permits easy and rapid laying-down 
motion of each dish without awkward 
crossing of left arm over right. 

(4) Thorough scraping facilities the actual wash- 


(5) Wire drainer keeping each dish separate is 

more efficient than tray or other flat surface 
which does not allow quick drying. 

(6) Similar shaped pieces can be washed with 

much greater rapidity per number than can 
poorly assorted ones ; hence the need of 
stacking similar dishes in groups. 


(7) Sitting down at dishwashing does not lessen 

the actual time, but does greatly lessen the 

(8) Scalding dishes in drainer more sanitary and 

less time-taking than hand wiping. 

(9) If shelves and closets for dishes and utensils 

are grouped near left of sink or in same 
relative position, the time saved in the laying 
away step will be considerable over that in 
which distant pantries are used, entailing 
several trips with trays, etc. 

(10) These generalizations cover washing of pots, 
silver and glass as well, except that all in 
these last three classes must be dried by 

This shows the method of analyzing and standardizing 
any particular task. The standardization includes close 
observation of the way the worker uses her hands, the tool 
and its conditions and particularly the preparatory and fol- 
lowing steps of any given piece of work. For instance, 
many a woman might, by timing herself, find that she made 
a cake on a ic-minute schedule, which is rapid work. But 
if she counted up the time she spent gathering her eggs, but- 
ter, milk, etc., together, and the time she spent "clearing up" 
and putting her materials and pans away, she would find 
that the total time was not 10 minutes, but possibly 25 
minutes. In this case, standardization of her work would 
involve a more step-saving kitchen arrangement, and better 
grouping of tools. 

Every task consists not of one single set of motions, but 
of a number of sets or processes linked together, as was 
shown above in dishwashing. The only way in which the 
whole process can be improved and shortened is by studying 


each one of these steps, improving and lessening the time it 
takes, which will thus lessen the time of the whole task. 

While cooking will be discussed in a later chapter in 
greater detail, it may be mentioned here that every cooking 
task consists of these three parts: 

(1) Getting materials ready for work. 

(2) Actual cooking proper. 

(3) Clearing-up; replacing materials and utensils. 

As was pointed out, time is lost not in point 2, but in 
points i and 3, and these conditions must be improved and 
time shortened here before we can shorten the entire time 
of cooking. 


In considering cleaning also, we find that it is not a single 
act, but composed of many complex processes, as Sweeping, 
Wiping, Dusting, Polishing, etc. Cleaning the average room 
includes several or all of these processes. Again, each of 
them is done with a separate tool. 

Now, we find that much time is lost by needless handling 
of cleaning tools. By carefully scheduling the order of 
cleaning a number of rooms, less frequent handling of uten- 
sils will be necessary. The time of cleaning a bedroom daily 
may be cut down from 20 to 10 minutes by repeating each 
day the definite cleaning order or schedule decided on. 


Following are a few time-studies of common tasks. It 
must be remembered, however, that this "time" will not 
apply in every case. They are only the result of work done 
under one given set of conditions. In your home they 
might be widely different, owing to the different conditions 
surrounding your work, or the different tools used. The 
amount of furniture in each room, the size of the room, etc., 


will affect a time-study of room-cleaning; or even the win- 
dow washing will vary with the dirt on the windows, and 
the tools and method used. Because you cannot do a similar 
piece of work in the same time does not mean that you are 
not a good worker these figures are given only to show 
you how you can work out your own time-studies, and use 
them as a basis of a schedule in your own home : 

Making double bed, approximately 5 minutes 

Making single bed, approximately 3 " 

Brushing up bedroom 14x16, approximately 12 " 

Daily care of bathroom, approximately 10 " 

1. Washing 50 dishes and 50 silver (entire process) by 

hand 40 " 

2. Washing 50 dishes and 50 silver by hand, but under 

standardized conditions 23 " 

1. Setting table for night meal, family of six (trips 

with trays) 13 " 

2. Setting table for night meal, family of six (tray on 

wheels) 6 

Washing average size 3-foot window, in and out 12 " 

Washing 8-light pane window 16 

1. Mopping kitchen (10x12) on hands and knees 20 

2. Mopping kitchen (10x12) with improved mop 14 

1. Breadmaking, by hand, 4 loaves, including cleaning 

board 24 " 

2. Breadmaking with mixer, 4 loaves, including clean- 

ing board 16 " 

Many women still persist in thinking that by timing them- 
selves they are holding a kind of whip of drudgery over 
themselves. On the contrary, no one factor makes a piece 
of work more interesting than that of timing it, and if pos- 
sible, lessening this time in future work. Instead of mak- 
ing a task drudgery, the timing acts as a stimulus to do the 
work more efficiently and "beat the record" of a previous 
effort. Women who have tried the timing plan say it makes 
the work more fun to do it with eyes on the clock in a 


determination to see in just how little time they can accom- 
plish it and yet do good work without "hurry." 

The more closely the worker can figure the time it takes 
for any given task, the more carefully can she arrange the 
housework schedule. She may, for instance have decided 
this to be the order of the morning's work : 

(1) Prepare and serve breakfast. 

(2) Scrape dishes; lay away food. 

(3) Make beds; brush up bedroom. 

(4) Brush up living rooms. 

(5) Lunch preparation. 

(6) Rest period. 

But, by timing herself at these various pieces of work, she 
will be able to add definite figures opposite, as, 

Preparing and serving breakfast 6 130 7 

Scrape dishes and lay away food. . . . 7:30 8:15 

Make beds ; brush up bedrooms 8:15 9 

Brush up living rooms 9 9 145 

Lunch preparation 9 145 10 145 

Rest period 10 145 1 1 145 

By working out a still closer time schedule she might be 
able to also include in the morning other work like special 
cleaning, cooking, sewing, or her marketing. The more 
closely work is timed the more nearly perfect the schedule 
will be. This timing will not be a handicap, but make the 
work more automatic so that it requires less nervous 


Sometimes women criticize the idea of the schedule, saying 
that it is impossible under home conditions of children, sick- 
ness, etc., to run the housework train on schedule time, and 
that it is not practical to think that at a given hour, say 8:15, 


the beds are going to be made, day in and day out. The 
answer is that we do not make any rule or helpful plan based 
upon exceptions. The fact that even the best "limited" 
express has to stop unexpectedly for accidents or because 
other trains are not living up to their schedule, does not 
interfere with the careful working out of a schedule under 
ordinary, normal circumstances. Because once in a week 
we are suddenly called from home, or because the baby is 
suddenly taken ill with croup and all schedules have to go by 
the board, is no sufficient reason why there should not be a 
schedule for the many regular days on which there are no 
unexpected interruptions, and which, after all, form the 
average day's work. 

Even if the exact time plan for a certain task cannot be 
followed, the order can usually be followed and the entire 
schedule either swung later or earlier in the day, or the less 
vital work omitted entirely. For instance, if we have a 
carefully planned schedule which starts with scraping dishes 
at 7:30, but unexpectedly receive an important telephone 
call which takes us out of the house for an hour, we merely 
shift the schedule an hour ahead to 8:30 and begin later, 
cutting down the least important morning's work, but still 
following the regular order. It is just in emergencies that 
the value of the schedule is most fully felt; with it we have 
a guiding plan of work under normal circumstances. Under 
the abnormal circumstances, it does not permit us to become 
flustered and completely upset. 

Again, the schedule enables us to have a better "grip on 
ourselves." Hundreds of women write in that they don't 
know where they are at; that they can't get ahead of the 
work, or never find time for themselves. Now, an attempt, 
at least, to work out and follow a household schedule gives 
a "grip" on one's self that is most helpful and encouraging. 
It makes you know what must be done and sets the problem 


before you of a certain given number of hours in which to 
do it. If you can plan, can arrange and master this situation, 
then you feel as proud and as confident as other workers in 
business or other fields who likewise have the assurance 
that comes from working under schedule conditions. 

I have seen women in food factories fill thousands of bot- 
tles of mustard per day, and girls bind books, or stamp and 
label cartons. In all these cases, a very great amount of 
work was demanded, but while the workers were tired at the 
end of the day, they uniformly said that there was little 
nervous strain because they knew what they could do in a 
day and when it was to be done and when they were to be 
through. In other words, standardised work anywhere re- 
laxes the nervous strain and gives a worker a feeling of 
mastery that working hit-and-miss never permits. 


While a schedule of household work most certainly helps 
the woman who does all of her own housework, it is just as 
important and necessary in a home where one or more ser- 
vants are employed, or where a worker comes in for the 
day, as cleaning woman, laundress, etc. One of the most 
frequent and strongest reasons alleged by servants them- 
selves as to why housework is not a desirable occupation is 
that they too "never have time to themselves," and do not 
work under any standard conditions. In large establish- 
ments where there are many workers this point is usually 
much better handled than in the small home with one general 
maid-of-all-work. It is actually much easier to secure help 
for a large establishment where there are definite assigned 
duties and definite work hours than it is to secure a worker 
for "general housework" in homes where the mistress either 
does not know or has not taken the trouble to schedule out 
the work for the one maid. 


Much friction can be avoided if the mistress will either 
alone or in co-operation with the worker, work out a daily 
and weekly schedule. How many times we hear a mistress 
remark, "I wonder what Katy is doing now ?" and there is a 
feeling that Katy is shirking her work or taking unnecessary 
time for herself. Again, Katy never knows what her definite 
rest period or "time off" will be, and the result is unsatis- 
faction on both sides. 

There is no difference between planning a schedule for a 
worker and planning a schedule for one's self. All the tasks 
that must be done daily and weekly should be written down 
and arranged in a tentative order. Some definite afternoon 
hour or hour and a half should be allowed for the worker 
in which to care for herself and do as she likes. It should 
also take into account the special holidays or afternoons off 
previously arranged with her at the time of engaging her. 
Good workers much prefer to work under schedule condi- 
tions and appreciate the fairness of such an arrangement, 
which will prevent argument as to why such and such a 
piece of work has been neglected. The schedule enables the 
worker to "know where she is at," and will prevent too much 
work being crowded into any one day. How can a mistress 
expect a smooth-running household and workers to give good 
service if the workers are left to follow out a hit-and-miss 
plan, to do work as they feel like it, or to be blamed for 
something which was overlooked, when the mistress herself 
never gave definite scheduled orders that this work should 
be done? 

Both a daily and weekly schedule can be written down for 
the hired worker. It should include the smallest details, as 
on what days tradesmen come, when to have laundry bundle 
ready, the exact hours at which meals are expected to be 
served, when special tasks like silver, window washing, 
pantry overhauling, etc., are to be done. Besides, a simple 


daily schedule including the best order of bedmaking, brush- 
ing up, meal preparation, etc., should be written down and 
both these schedules hung in the kitchen or written down in 
a little booklet and given to the worker when she first comes. 
While such a schedule will vary in every household, the 
following points should be covered in a schedule made for 
the worker : 

(1) Hour of rising for worker. 

(2) Hour of meals. 

(3) Hour of consultation with mistress regarding 

food supplies and meals. 

(4) Daily work routine. 

(5) Days on which special work is done. 

(6) Definite rest period each afternoon. 

(7) Definite arrangements as to holidays or off 


In connection with this schedule, explicit directions can 
be given as to where tools are kept, how to use and care for 
them, and minor details of the way work is preferred to be 
done in this particular household. These directions will be 
spoken of in a later chapter, where it will be shown how a 
mistress can make a "practice book" which will be inval- 
uable to put in the hands of a new worker and which will 
assist in "training" a servant more rapidly and enable the 
work to be done with far less misunderstanding and 



(Winter; family of adults; city conditions) 

6 A. M. Worker rises 

Attends to furnace and range 
Prepares and serves breakfast 


Inspects supplies with mistress and plans meals, perhaps 

'phoning to tradespeople 
Dishwashing and kitchen straightening 
Daily chamberwork 
Brushing up living-rooms 
Prepares and serves lunch 

Luncheon dishes; supper preparation; kitchen straighten- 
ing. Special afternoon task of cleaning 

Afternoon rest period, generally 3 130 to 4 130 or 3 130 to 
5, in which worker freshens up, changes to afternoon 
uniform and has time to herself 

Prepares and serves supper 

Washes dishes and makes slight preparations for breakfast 

More specific directions giving the hours and times of 
these tasks would have to be worked out in each special 
case, depending on the number in the family, the size of the 
house, and the houfs of meals, etc., and whether some of the 
work was done by the mistress herself (as daily care of 
bedrooms), or whether some of the work was done by other 
hired help, as care of furnace by hired man, or laundry 
work done by laundress. If there are more than one worker, 
the schedules should show the duties of each, where one 
worker takes the place of the other, and other details which 
will prevent any clash between them. 


In developing plans for more standardized housework it 
will be found that equipment as well as methods affects the 
schedule. As was shown in the discussion of improved dish- 
washing methods, every step must be studied in a given task 
to see where time and effort can be saved by doing it in a 
better, shorter way. This way may depend also on the kind 
of equipment used. For instance, a work scheduled in a 
certain home may be carefully developed and followed where 
the fuel is coal or gas, but by using a fireless cooker in con- 



nection with these fuels the schedule would be greatly modi- 
fied, the time at which cooking was done would be altered 
and the rest period changed. This is shown in the following 
schedule : 


A. M. 
6 :oo- 6 130 
6:30- 7:15 

7:i5- 7:45 
8 -30- 9 :30 
9 :30-io :45 


11 :45~i2:oo 

12 :oo- i :oo 

P. M. 
1:00- 2:00 
2 :oo- 3 :oo 
3:00- 4:00 
4 :oo- 5 :30 

Without a Fireless Cooker 

Rise and dress 

Prepare breakfast 


Wash dishes and clear up kitchen 

Make beds; brush upstairs rooms and bath 

To kitchen to start luncheon. Return to cleaning of 

downstairs rooms 
To kitchen to watch cooking and prepare other food 

for lunch 
Serve lunch 

Wash lunch dishes; mop kitchen; sweep porch 
Finish interrupted downstairs cleaning of morning 
Special cleaning; windows, or silver, stove or pantry 
Prepare roast, vegetables and dessert for dinner and 

watch their cooking 
5 :30- 6 :oo Dress ; serve dinner 

With a Fireless Cooker 
A. M. (30 minutes saved) 
6:30107:00 Rise and dress 
7:00- 7:15 Remove breakfast from fireless 
7:15- 7:45 Breakfast 
7 :45~ 8 :45 Wash dishes and clear up kitchen ; place lunch in 


8 :45~ 9 '45 Make beds ; brush upstairs rooms and bath 
9:45-10:45 Clean downstairs rooms 

10:45-11:45 Special cleaning; windows, stove, silver or pantry 
11:45-12:00 Serve lunch 
12:00- i :oo Lunch 


P. M. 

1 :oo- 2 :oo Wash lunch dishes ; mop kitchen ; sweep porch 

2 :oo- 2 130 Put dinner in fireless 

2 :30- 5 :45 Rest or recreation period 

3^4 hours saved 
5 145- 6 :oo Serve dinner from fireless 

Again, the use of a washing machine might change the 
schedule of washday quite differently than if a boiler were 
used. If a vacuum cleaner is used this might quite consid- 
erably alter the amount of time necessary to a daily cleaning 
with broom. Many of the better pieces of equipment affect 
the schedule not so much in point of time saving in a single 
operation as in the number of times or amount of handling 
the method without the equipment entails. To illustrate ; 
a twice-a-week cleaning with a vacuum cleaner might take 
the place of an every-day brushing up with the broom. Or 
the preparation and handling of a boiler, laundry stove, sad 
irons, etc., would make a different schedule than if a wash- 
ing machine were used with an abundant hot water supply 
from a central hot water heating system. 


The housekeeper who faces the greatest number of prob- 
lems seems to be the woman in the country without "con- 
veniences" and whose fuel requires more attention, and 
whose home is usually larger and home duties more numer- 
ous. In addition, the country woman has her chickens, her 
garden, her canning, perhaps even butter-making, and fre- 
quently many more to cook for. 

Here is where the schedule meets the severest test and 
where also it helps the most. As was said, if a worker has 
only one or two tasks to do all day long there is scarcely 
any need for planning, but if her hands and head must see 
through a dozen, yes more, tasks, then a plan becomes an 


absolute necessity, if she is not going to find herself worked 
to death, fagged out, with no recreation time. The schedule 
for the .country worker must include all the tasks which fall 
into her particular hands. It must attempt to divide the 
whole week's work so that only a fair share is done each 
day. It too must give the worker time to attend a grange 
meeting, to read an agricultural bulletin or to merely sit out- 
doors and enjoy some of her own trees and sunshine. 

The meal problem is generally the heaviest, so that the 
point to begin the schedule with here is careful menu plan- 
ning and arrangement of cooking so as to simplify as much 
as possible. The use of a fireless cooker, an oil stove, or a 
steam cooker, will cut down the cooking time. Also cooking 
ahead, as is frequently practiced in the country, is the best 
means of having a lighter afternoon. Simple furnishings 
and the doing away with unnecessary care-making articles 
will lessen the cleaning problem, as generally the country 
woman has less time to spend on cleaning and the upkeep 
of the house. Careful planning of trips outdoors will save 
time, bringing in vegetables on returning from feeding poul- 
try, etc. Washing vegetables outdoors or out of the kitchen 
will prevent much unnecessary cleaning work in the kitchen. 
Lamps can be carried down on going downstairs in the morn- 
ing so that special trips will not have to be made to come up 
and get them. 

The arrangement of the kitchen, particularly, affects the 
country schedule, and every means should be taken that the 
pocketbook affords to solve the water problem and make 
the kitchen as convenient a workshop as possible. One case 
comes to mind of a farmer who had water piped into his 
barn for his convenience in watering the animals, but who 
refused to pipe it into the kitchen for his wife, who was 
thus forced to carry wash water from a distant outside 
pump. Built-in conveniences like wood-bin, elevator ice-box 


which saves running up and down cellar, ample shelf or 
dresser room will make a difference of an hour perhaps in 
the work schedule. 


The argument is sometimes advanced that business can be 
run more on the sechedule plan because there are no inter- 
ruptions like there are in homes. But a trip through any 
business office or establishment will show that this is not 
true. There are visitors who must be interviewed, constant 
calls on the telephone, demands of stenographers or clerks, 
letters must be written, merchandise looked over and direc- 
tions given. Yet the modern man in his work has applied 
the schedule method with the result that he can handle twice 
as much business as his father with half the effort. 

Today the woman in the home is called upon to be an 
executive as well as a manual laborer. Just to be a good 
worker and keep on working until you drop is not sufficient 
or efficient either. The more planning, the more brains, 
the more management, a woman puts into her housework, 
the less friction and the less nervous energy she will have 
to expend. Housework above any other must be followed 
on the schedule plan so that a woman will know what she 
must do, how long it takes her to do it, and when she can 
get through and do something else. 

Many women everywhere are working schedules out for 
their own particular conditions. As one little woman, the 
mother of four babies, said at the close of a lecture: "I 
never used to know what piece of work I had to do next, 
but as you said, I sat down and wrote out all the things 
that had to be done, trying to arrange them in the best order 
I could. I followed this order for a week, perhaps longer, 
seeing where I had made a mistake and could arrange some- 
thing better in its place. It took me about six weeks to 


master the situation, but I did overcome it and have been 
doing housework the schedule way ever since, and thanks to 
this plan, I now do just as much work and have, in addition, 
about an hour and a half a day in which to sew for the 
babies. If I can't finish everything on schedule owing to 
interruptions from the babies, etc., I at least have the satis- 
faction of doing the most important work in an orderly way 
and knowing where I must catch up later." 

No tiny piece of work or task is too small to be left out 
of the schedule. Indeed, the three-meals-a-day problem, or 
even the cleaning problem, do not have to be considered and 
planned for so much as the little task, the ordering, the run- 
ning back and forth, the right location of tools, the deliv- 
eries, the minor details which either make or mar the house- 
keeping management. There is no excuse for "Oh, I forgot 
to order more sugar," for making four trips upstairs which 
could have been taken in one, or of finding that there isn't 
another egg in the house. Scheduled work can be proved a 
success no matter what the conditions, the family, or the 
location. You can maka your housework easier and find 
time for yourself if you will only try to follow the schedule 
plan. Find out what you must do, write out when you can 
best do it and try to improve even this plan. Repeat com- 
mon tasks in the same manner, and if possible at the same 
time so that they become mechanical and thus take less 
energy. That is, study dishwashing, or cleaning, or laundry, 
or any other minor tasks until you know just how you ought 
to proceed to do it in your particular home. Watch yourself 
at work and make a "time study" of the time and steps in 
one method and then in another. When you have found 
out the method that seems shortest, practice it until it be- 
comes second nature and habitual. Time yourself, just for 
fun, at first, and you will see the practical value in the end. 
Try to go your former schedule "one better" and beat your- 


self. You will be repaid in more recreation time and in a 
grip on your housework that you have never had before. 


After finding the plan of work which seems best and 
after having arranged each task in its approximate time, 
make a permanent record of it. One way is to take sheets 
of paper about 6x9 and on each sheet write the outline for a 
separate day. Punch a hole at the top, tie loosely together 
and fasten on a cuphook in the kitchen either over the sink, 
table or other conspicuous place. Each day turn one of the 
sheets over to the proper day, as, Tuesday. Another way 
is to use large filing cards and keep them in a filing cabinet 
over the kitchen table, substituting a new card in place each 
morning. A notebook at hand will serve in which to jot 
down suggestions and improvements which can later be 
added to the permanent record. 

For a servant it is best to write the schedule in a per- 
manent blank-book so that they will not be lost. Special 
instructions or standards for each specific task can also be 
included, as, "Standard Practice for Dishwashing," for 
"Setting the Table," for "Cleaning Rooms," for "Laundry 
Work," etc. Such a "practice book" will correspond to the 
"instruction card" given workmen in factories where scien- 
tific management prevails. These instructions can include 
the exact tools to 'use and approximately how long it takes. 
This makes for accuracy and avoids misunderstanding. 

For instance, a practice card on bread-making to be 
handed a new worker might be as follows : 

2 c milk 2 t sugar 

2 c water or potato water i yeast cake softened 

i c shortening in i c tepid water 

4 t salt (level) Flour (about 3 quarts) 


Hear milk and water to boiling, add salt, sugar and shortening. 
Put into the bread mixer. When cooled to 100 (luke warm), add 
the yeast which has been soaking in tepid water. Add half the flour 
to make a soft batter and stir vigorously. Add remainder of flour 
to make a stiff dough and stir till springy. 

Let rise in a warm place until double the bulk (about 2 h), then 
stir down, take out of mixer, form into loaves, let rise in the baking 
pans until double the bulk (about 2 h) and bake about I hour. Keep 
the dough warm throughout, 8o -QO . 

Wednesdays and Saturdays baking days. 

Make 4 loaves, three plain, one with raisins, and pan 

of hot biscuit 

Use breadmixer and agate measuring utensils 
Preparation time required, about 8 minutes soak 

mixer and scrape board as soon as work is finished 

In a similar way, ''practice instructions" can be given on 
each of the cleaning tasks which will be mentioned in a later 
chapter. The very smallest detail of work can be timed and 
written down. The more detailed the schedule the less 
chance for the unexpected to be overlooked, or for any 
mistake, forgetting, confusion and hurry. 

Have you a small house or a large house ? Babies to care 
for, meals to cook, and cleaning work to be done? Then 
try the "schedule way" for two weeks at least. See if 
"things" don't come easier, and that you are less worried 
and tired. Determine to "master" this planning of work 
for that is all a schedule is, a plan of work which shall 
permit the tasks of housework to be done in an orderly, 
smooth manner with the least friction and confusion. You, 
too, can have a "housework train." It is your part to decide 
at what stations it shall stop, and for how long at each one. 
It is a route from drudgery to efficiency and personal 




1. Make out a schedule of your present plan of work. 

Study to see where it can be improved. Try the new 
schedule two weeks. Revise and try another two 
weeks, and report. 

2. Time yourself for at least a week on the same task, as, 

washing dishes, peeling potatoes, making beds, or 
cleaning the bathroom. How long does it take? Do 
you find the time varying from day to day? Write 
down two complete "time-studies" on these tasks, 
showing the first record and the last. 

3. "Standardize" some household task so that you can do 

it every day in an identical manner without much 
mental attention. Does this not make it seem less 

4. What are your worst "interruptions" ? Make a schedule 

which will take care of them as much as possible. 

5. Do the same task with two different tools, and note the 

difference, or do the same task with two different 
methods, or do it under two different sets of condi- 
tions. Find out the way that seems the best and 
shortest for your particular case and report. 






THERE is a great contrast between methods of house- 
work in the United States and in other countries, with 
the balance of convenience, labor-saving and easier 
methods in the American housewife's favor. The reason 
for this is that in no other country has mechanical inven- 
tion been applied so extensively and successfully to all the 
different tasks of the home. The inventiveness of the 
Yankee is proverbial, and he has turned this quality to the 
making of mechanical labor-savers not only in his own shop 
and office, but for the benefit of the homemaker as well. 
There are on the market today literally' thousands of house- 
hold tools, devices and equipment for every possible need 
of the home. It only remains for the homemaker to choose 
among them wisely. 

Another reason for the great supply and demand for 
household labor savers in this country is that the American 
homemaker has to face the increasingly complex problem 
of scarce domestic help. Even today in other countries 
service cost has been low, and one can secure a cook for 
$12 or a housemaid for $8 a month. With such cheap labor, 
the need for the mechanical replacers of labor, or "mechan- 
ical servants," has not been keenly felt there. In the 



United States, according to estimates, only 8 percent of 
all families employ even one servant permanently. This 
means that 92 percent of homemakers are performing their 
own household tasks. It is to this class of women who are 
actively concerned in the work of the home that the labor- 
saver and improved modern tool most appeal. The home- 
maker's time and effort are worth conserving by every 
means. She should therefore, be eager to buy and use all 
the household tools which will save her strength and time 
and liberate her from household drudgery. 


While some women are "handy" with tools, the fact re- 
mains that most women are unfamiliar with the different 
principles involved in mechanical tools and devices. The 
boy almost unconsciously absorbs knowledge about gears, 
motors, force pumps, turbines, etc., in his daily work and 
play, but the girl neglects handling or learning about tools, 
believing it unnecessary or possibly unfeminine. 

The homemaker, however, needs a most thorough knowl- 
edge of the principles of applied mechanics. Even many a 
good course in school physics unfortunately leaves a stu- 
dent with but little practical knowledge applied to the tools 
and equipment to be found in every kitchen and home. The 
more a woman knows about tools the more intelligent she 
will be as a buyer. Such knowledge will save her from the 
useless expense of buying worthless equipment, and make 
her more interested in purchasing the good tools and high- 
class equipment which will help greatly in saving time and 


The only right and economical view to assume in buying 
any and all equipment is to ask one's self beforehand, "Will 


this article be a permanent investment ?" We cannot afford 
to buy tools for temporary use. They should be regarded 
in the light of permanent purchases whose use will be ex- 
tended over a considerable period of time. Too many 
women buy equipment on a basis of cost only. They look 
at the price without considering how many times the article 
will be used. It is not the cost, but the number of times of 
use, which must be the basis of economical, efficient buying. 
For instance, a woman may see an attractive cherry 
seeder costing only $1.00. The ease with which it removes 
the pits and time it saves influences her to its purchase. 
She will, however, hesitate and pass by a serving tray on 
wheels costing $10.00 which she can just as readily see will 
save her steps in setting and clearing the table, serving 
meals, etc. The reason that she buys the $1.00 device in 
preference to the $10.00 article is not because she cannot 
afford either of them, but because she is wrongly buying on 
a basis of cost only. The cherry seeder may be used only 
ten times during the cherry season and never used the rest 
of the year. The serving tray will be used three times a 
day every day in the year, and on an investment basis com- 
pares with the cherry seeder as follows : 

First Cost Per 
Cost Use 

Cherry seeder, used 10 times during season $ i.oo $0.10 

Serving tray, used 3 times daily, 365 days 10.00 .009 

This illustration is used not to disparage the cherry seeder 
or any other good device, but to show that equipment must 
be bought on a basis of the number of times of use, and 
not on the basis of first cost. In other words, the home- 
maker must ask herself, not "How much does it cost?" but 
"How many times will I use it?" 

This investment point of view must be taken especially in 
regard to more expensive equipment like washing machines, 


dishwashers, mangles, fireless cookers, and others in which 
the first cost represents considerable money outlay. If her 
family is large and she hears of a good, labor-saving dish- 
washing machine costing $50.00, her attitude must not be 
"Oh I cannot afford $50.00!" She must reason to herself 
something like this : "This dishwasher with care will last a 
minimum of ten years. Allowing 6 percent interest on my 
money, the annual cost of such a washer would be $5.00 
depreciation and $3.00 interest or 15 cents per week or 
about 2 cents per day." 

The question of purchase then, resolves itself not into 
whether one can afford $50.00 but whether one can afford 
2 cents a day to reduce the drudgery of dishwashing. This 
is the investment, "long distance" view which is the only 
really economical one to take in purchasing all tools, no mat- 
ter how small or great their 'cost. The chief reason why 
women have not still more successfully put their homes on 
a mechanical .and labor-saving basis as has long since been 
done by men, is because they have taken the short-sighted 
view and spent most of their money on small, cheap, but 
seldom used articles on a cost basis. 


The second important question the homemaker must ask 
herself before purchasing equipment is, "Is this tool needed 
in my particular family ?" A tool that would be an excellent 
investment for Family A might be an injudicious and un- 
necessary purchase for Family B. For instance, even so 
very useful a device as a breadmixer might be an unjusti- 
fiable outlay in a small family where bread was made only 
'once a week. Similarly, an excellent fireless cooker, no 
matter how worth-while in itself, might be questionable as 
an investment for a family especially fond of broiled meats, 


or with an aversion to stewed foods, and which seldom made 
soups at home, or followed cooking methods in which lies 
the chief value of the fireless. Too often women are in- 
fluenced in their purchasing solely because other neighbors 
have bought a certain device; because it appears attractive 
in the tore, or because they think it is a helpful tool in 
itself, without considering its relation to the needs of their 
particular family. 


Again, one of the most neglected points in the mind of 
the woman purchaser is, the scientific construction of the 
tool or device. This is the most difficult point on which it 
is necessary to be informed, and usually her only means 
are the words of salesmen and descriptive circulars. But 
the scientific construction should be understood, especially 
before buying such pieces as refrigerators, stoves, fireless 
cookers, various kinds of washing devices, and others where 
the satisfactory working depends on proper insulation, con- 
venient leverage, etc. Before buying say, a refrigerator, it 
is best to read some authority or some dependable pamphlet 
on the principles of refrigeration. This will enable the 
prospective buyer to question the salesman intelligently, 
compare the various models examined, and see if they ful- 
fil scientific demands as to insulation, lining, air currents, 
etc. If this is done, there will be fewer purchases of re- 
frigerators which waste ice and give poor service after 
short use. 

Another reason why a woman should understand scientific 
construction before purchase is that there will be fewer 
chances of her being disappointed in the device afterward 
because of her own failure to understand it. For instance, 
a friend hearing of the widespread craze over fireless cook- 


ers, purchased an excellent make. After a two weeks* use 
she returned it, complaining that "it wouldn't work," and 
was thereafter prejudiced against all fireless cookers. The 
real situation was that she hadn't understood the scientific 
idea of cooking by conserved heat on which the fireless is 
based. She didn't learn exactly how to operate it before 
purchase, and so was dissatisfied and deprived of the serv- 
ice of a good device, largely because of her own failure to 
understand scientific principles. 

The best method is to have one or several demonstrations 
of any device, handling it one's self before purchase. First 
hand information from those who have used it thoroughly 
is also better than trusting entirely to circulars. Another 
means is to know the standing of the manufacturer, insist 
on his guarantee, and whenever possible, buy trade-marked, 
identified lines of goods. Very often there is a free test 
offered in the home, especially with vacuum cleaners, 
washers, etc., which should always be taken advantage of. 
Every possible test should be given the device before actual 


Very often a device which fulfils other conditions men- 
tioned above fails in the small but essential point of com- 
fort in use. This is especially true of handles, levers, etc., 
which either by their shape, finish, or point of attachment 
prove uncomfortable when used in the hands of the worker. 
There is the case of a breadmixer with the leverage applied 
at the top of the pail; otherwise a fine labor-saver, it re- 
quires an awkward arm motion which would not be the 
case if the leverage were applied at the base and side of 
the pail as indeed it is, in another make. The handles of 
many egg-beaters, mashers, spoons, etc., are not shaped for 
the comfort of the hand, although there are others on the 


market which do offer this point of comfort. Sometimes 
the handle is too short or too long, flat instead of rounded. 
Or a lever would be easier to operate if several inches 
longer, and many other instances occur where the small 
but impoitaiat points of comfort are not considered. 


Frequently the lack of a well-finished surface, or poor 
construction spoils an otherwise good tool. An excellent 
dish drainer with a tray of galvanized iron is on the market, 
but the edges of the lower pan are so imperfectly S9ldered 
and so rough that the hand continually becomes scratched 
while working near it. Again, the hinges of a fine fireless 
cooker were found to be so jagged that as the cooker set 
out in the room, the worker tore her apron upon it every 
time she passed quickly. This detail of finishing should not 
have been overlooked in such a high-priced device, nor in- 
deed in any other. The interior of kitchen cabinets, the 
trays of gas ranges, the seams and handles of many other 
utensils, especially those made of wire, tin or galvanized 
iron, are all places for the housewife's careful inspection 
before purchase. 


"Is this device easy to wash and keep clean?" is another 
important question which should be asked previous to buy- 
ing. Too frequently the time and difficulty of washing and 
keeping a tool in good condition is entirely overlooked. 
Many devices have complicated parts, gears, beaters, ad- 
justable cutters, etc. Now, the question of how long it 
takes to wash and assemble these parts after use must be 
considered, because this time really forms part of the total 
time that the device is being used. For instance, there is a 


most efficient stationary puree-strainer consisting of a per- 
forated drum, stand, rotating blade, separate handle and 
three screws. It does most excellent rapid work in mashing 
potatoes, straining, etc., but it requires six or eight minutes 
to wash, dry, and assemble the parts ready for the next 
use. In short, while it does the actual work in less time 
than the old-fashioned strainer, the additional time required 
to clean it makes the total time of both equal. The value 
of this tool, then, cannot be estimated in terms of time, but 
only in terms of the superior quality of the work done by 
this device over some other. 

It should be firmly remembered that no device should 
take longer to clean and adjust than the time it saves by its 
increased efficiency over some other method otherwise, it 
ceases to be a labor-saver and must be justified on some 
other grounds. For the woman who does her own work, 
this point of the time and care required in washing and 
handling any tool must not be overlooked. 


Just as it is necessary to know exact measurements in 
buying apparel, furnishings or other household articles, so 
it is worth while to consider exact sizes in buying house- 
hold tools and equipment. Shall one purchase a two-hole 
or a three-hole fireless? Will a certain vacuum cleaner be 
adequate in size for the number of rooms and work de- 
manded? How many sheets or other unit of capacity will 
a given washing-machine hold? 

These questions of size must be asked in buying, in order 
to purchase a utensil or other piece of equipment adapted 
to the particular needs of a particular family. Unneces- 
sarily large equipment has the disadvantages of taking up 
floor or storage space, being in many cases heavier to han- 
dle and care for, and particularly offering a larger surface 



to clean. If a two-hole fireless be ample, it is surely unwise 
to purchase a three-hole which will take up another square 
foot of space and be that much heavier to move ; or a "large" 
meat-chopper offers no advantage over a "medium" size 
under most conditions. 

Sanitary and easily cleaned 

In one pantry recently explored by the writer, no less than 
twenty- four saucepans and cooking utensils were found. 
When this was commented upon, (chiefly because it took up 
so much space), the homemaker replied that she had to have 
them. The truth was, that they were badly chosen as to 
size, and that the same service could have been filled by as 
few as eight pots, if selected with their exact purpose in 
mind, thus cutting down pantry space two-thirds. It is 
easy to measure the capacity of any utensil with a quart 


measure or to secure from the manufacturer the estimated 
capacity and power of other equipment. If the kitchens 
of the future are to be more step-saving and less costly the 
minimum of equipment should be chosen. 


All equipment falls broadly into two classes: (i) the 
fixed, like the sink, range, etc., and (2) the portable, to 
which the great bulk of minor tools and devices belong ; and 
this latter class can again be divided into 

(1) Labor savers. 

(2) Fuel savers. 

(3) Time savers. 

(4) Step savers. 

In addition, there is a fairly large group whose main ap- 
peal is sanitary or hygienic value ; there is also a wide group 
of miscellaneous tools which cannot be clearly classed. In 
many cases, too, the same device overlaps into two or even 
three of the above groups, but this classification is very 
convenient because it helps the homemaker decide exactly 
what value she most receives from the tool or device. 

We shall discuss in this chapter all equipment except that 
belonging particularly to the cleaning or laundry processes 
which will be taken up separately in the discussions of these 


Many of the best household tools fall under the heading 
"labor savers." The list is long and includes the mechanical 
helps which replace more laborious hand process work. 
Such a partial list is : 

Bread and cake mixers. 

Egg beaters, cream whips, mayonnaise mixers. 

Ice cream freezers, butter churns. 


Coffee, spice and meat grinders. 

Stationary colanders, strainers and mashers. 

Potato parers, fruit corers and parers, slicing devices of 

all kinds. 

Stationary chocolate and cheese graters. 
Stationary nut crackers. 

Dishwashing machine. 
Dishdraining rack. 


The results of standardizing dishwashing by hand have 
been given on pages 78 to 80, showing that it is possible to 


reduce the time nearly one-half by substituting rinsing on 
a wire drainer for wiping and arranging shelves adjacent to 
the sink for laying away the dishes. The following tests 
were made with the most prominent portable dishwashing 
machines on the market. 

Both hand tests and tests with four different types of 
mechanical commercial dishwashers were made simul- 
taneously over a considerable period. In each of these 
tests the same number of dishes (50) and silver (50) were 
used at each test. The temperature of the wash water was 
140 degrees with the washers, and 120 degrees with hand 

H S 




tests. The average from three tests is given below with full 


Dishwasher A: Tub or barrel model; in poorly finished, aluminized 
sheet iron. Principle of force pump ; operating through a per- 
forated cylinder in center of washer from which water is forced 
over the dishes by action of a hand-lever at top of lid. Two 
drain racks; only fair stacking of dishes possible. Very labori- 
ous method of draining water by hand from stop-cock in base 
of can. Can bulky and space-taking. Action easy, but force 
of water poor and not satisfactory for thorough cleansing. 

Results : Inadequate ; many dishes, especially cups, not entirely 

Amount of wash water 4 gallons 

Amount cf rinsing water... 3 gallons 

Washing time 10 minutes 

Rinsing time 7 minutes 

Dishwasher B: Tub model of enameled stamped metal; operating 
on principle of turbine by hand lever. Low gearing. One wire 
rack without handles, perforated upper lid. Action of lever 
very easy; force of water only moderate. Wastes space in 
upper part of tub. Difficulty in removing rack without handles. 

Results : Inadequate, as custard in cups, coffee grounds, etc., not 
removed in given period of washing. Good points are neat, 
small appearance of can and simplicity of emptying water by 
pressure on small valve. 

Amount of wash water 2 1 /& gallons 

Amount of rinsing water 2% gallons 

Washing time 6 minutes 

Rinsing time 4 minutes 

Dishwasher C: Square box model of galvanized iron; on principle 
of force-pump operating by hand lever on outside of box ; a 
spray of water thrown by swinging nozzle which can be moved 
from side to side ; water easily emptied by pressure on small 
valve. Height about three inches; too low for convenient 
operation. Maximum amount of dishes, 40 ; silver, 25 pieces ; 
held in small detachable box in center. Vertical wire racks for 
dishes, with separate side cup-hooks. 

Results : Satisfactory, but action back-breaking owing to low height 
and general inconvenience of this model. 

Amount of wash water 1% gallons 

Amount of rinsing water. . 1% gallons 

Washing time 6 minutes 

Rinsing time . . . . . 3 minutes 


Dishwasher D: Tub model of substantial retinned metal. Power 
transmitted through hand lever and chain sprocket to a shaft 
and bevel gear at bottom of can which operates a horizontal 
dasher inside on the principle of the turbine; throws water 
with great force, adequately spraying upper and lower tray 
which have convenient handles. Permits satisfactory stacking 
odd-shaped pieces in top tray under convex lid. Action a little 
too difficult and lever should work much more easily. 

Results: Entirely adequate, and even milky and egg-soiled dishes 
entirely cleansed. 

Amount of wash water 2% gallons 

Amount of rinsing water 2% gallons 

Washing time 5 minutes 

Rinsing time 3 minutes 

Total time, including 6 m scraping and stack- 
ing, "5 m drying, 4 m laying away and 2 m 

cleaning washer 25 minutes 

Hand Method: Stack surface at right of sink, drain surface at left 
of sink, rectangular washing pan, wire drainer keeping each 
dish separate and permitting them to dry after rinsing without 
wiping, long handled dish mop. 

Amount of wash water 1% gallons 

Amount of rinsing water 1 gallon 

Washing time 14 minutes 

Rinsing time 2 minutes 

Total time, including 6 m scraping and stack- 
ing, 5 m drying, 4 m laying away on adja- 
cent shelves and 5 m cleaning sink 36 minutes 


The case for all mechanical washers can be summed up as 
follows : 

(1) There is less danger of chipping and breaking. 

(2) There is much greater sanitation and possible sterilization. 

(3) There is no discomfort or hard usage to hands. 

(4) They cut down only actual washing time, but that consider- 
ably. If operated by motor power the amount of effort as 
well would be greatly reduced. This was seen in several 
hotel dishwashers operated by power where the labor of the 
operator is negligible. 

(5) They offer a sanitary container for the temporary storage of 
soiled dishes over night or until desired number accumulate, 
permitting washing to be done once a day in a small family. 
This is a very great advantage. 


The case against the mechanical washer in its present form, and 
under existing conditions, is : 

(1) Results, except in one of the small portable detached washers, 
were unsatisfactory, and the amount of effort required in op- 
eration somewhat offset other good points. 

(2) In every test, the portable washer "crept" about the floor with 
the action of the lever. The difficulty of filling and emptying 
these models by hand was considerable and had to be included 
in the total washing time. 

(3) The time required for the steps of stacking, scraping and 
laying away is identical under both hand and mechanical meth- 
ods. The only steps affected are the ones of actual washing 
and sometimes wiping. This saving of time and also of effort 
is much more marked in those machines operated by power, 
as was seen in close study of hotel washers. 

(4) The use of the washer is strictly limited to dishes, glass and 
silver; no odd shaped utensils, pitchers, eggbeaters, or pots 
were successfully washed in all cases, and the arrangement 
of the racks does not permit the stacking of these articles. 

(5) The time in one step, washing (5 minutes vs. 14 minutes) is 
cut considerably by the use of a mechanical device; but this 
saving is partially offset by the increased amount of effort 
required to operate the lever in all cases. In no case would it 
be advisable to operate a dishwasher in a beautiful street 
dress, as some manufacturers suggest by their circulars in 
order to thoroughly cleanse the dishes considerable physical 
movement must be made. 

(6) The quantity of exceedingly hot water required in nearly 
every case with a washer is a point against it in many homes 
under present conditions. The efficiency of all washers was 
found to depend very largely on the degree of heat of the 
water ; second, the satisfactory "self-wiping" of the dishes as 
they rest on the racks, which is made such a strong point by 
the washer manufacturers, depends even more largely on this 
same factor. 




It should be borne in mind that the defects pointed out 
in the mechanical washer refer solely to those operated by 
hand, and not to dishwashers operated either by motor or 
other power; and to those not permanently connected with 
the plumbing and hot water system. 


Combines kitchen table, with white enameled top, with a dishwashing 


In conclusion, it is the writer's opinion that no portable, 
detached washer which entails hand filling and emptying, 
has very great efficiency value. The ideal for the mechanical 
washer must be a permanent installation connected with 
an adequate water supply of scalding water, having its 
drain outlet connected with the regular plumbing. Such con- 


nections are not difficult or expensive to make. At present 
the best solution of the hot water problem is to put in one 
of the automatic instantaneous gas hot water heaters which 
can be regulated to give scalding hot water in any quantity 
desired. These heaters for furnishing hot water all over 
the house on the turn of the faucet cost about $150, but a 
small "bath" instantaneous heater, for dishwashing, can be 
installed for $45. 


In the days when wood was to be had for the picking up, 
costing nothing but labor, and when coal was $3 and $4 
a ton, no question arose of economy of fuel. Today the 
cost of all fuels has so markedly increased that the con- 
servation of fuel, and thus the lowering of fuel cost is one 
of the homemaker's chief problems. 

Since she must pay the prices demanded for fuels today 
(range coal costing in many sections anywhere between $6 
and $10 per ton and other fuels also being high) the only 
way she can meet the problem is by using such cooking 
methods and cooking equipment as will conserve, not waste 
fuel. In addition, she can today command the services of 
three fuels practically unknown to her grandmother gas, 
alcohol and electricity. 

The great disadvantage of both coal and wood is that it 
is not possible to put them under direct control ; even with 
the best constructed range, much of the heat generated is not 
actually used in a cooking process. Regarded solely in the 
light of a cooking equipment, both coal and wood-using 
stoves are wasteful of fuel. Moreover, they result in a 
large percent of waste products like ashes, clinkers, dust, 
etc., which entail labor in keeping the stove and kitchen in 
proper condition. 


The ideal cooking fuel is one that can be directly con- 
trolled and checked, the moment it is desired to finish a 
cooking process. It must also be one in which waste prod- 
ucts, offensive gases, radiated heat and other accompani- 
ments of combustion are reduced to the minimum. Gas as 
a fuel has these advantages and even when the price is as 
high as $1.50 per 1,000 cubic feet it costs less to use than 
coal, if any value is placed on the housekeeper's time. At 
low prices, 60 cents to 80 cents per 1,000 cubic feet, the ad- 
vantages are all with gas. 

The newer models of the gas stove have an upper oven, 
which makes for efficiency by preventing unnecessary stoop- 
ing. Burners of different sizes are provided and broilers 
and warming ovens so placed as to be in the most con- 
venient position. Before using any gas stove it is best to 
have a demonstration by the agent of the local company 
who should explain the care of the burners, how to adjust 
the flame, how to detect when there is too much or too little 
air mixed with -the gas and other details which will enable 
the operator to use the range most intelligently. Besides the 
gas range, there are other devices using gas now perfected. 
Such are the gas iron, chafing dish and percolator with gas 
connection, gas water heater and other pieces heated by gas. 


Within very recent years, the new fuel, denatured alcohol, 
has been offered the homemaker. Denatured alcohol is 
formed by adding wood (methyl) alcohol and petroleum 
benzine to ordinary (ethyl) alcohol. It is thus com- 
pletely unfit for food use and is indeed dangerously poisonous. 
It burns with a clear, intense flame (with no by-products of 
carbon, odors, etc.), and there are on the market special 
stoves for its use which resemble the small gas "hot plate." 
But its cost in this country (even at the wholesale prices of 



45 t 75 cents per gallon) makes it too expensive a fuel for 
regular family use. Also the fuel value in a gallon of 
alcohol is only about 2/3 that of a gallon of kerosene or 
gasolene. Its use at present must be confined to the occa- 

Portable oven fits over two burners 

sional chafing-dish, percolator, plate warmer and other small 
pieces for distinctly table service. There are however, sev- 
eral excellent one-burner stoves, easy of operation, which 
will fill many a place in sick-room and light housekeeping 
cookery where other fuels are not available. 



To the rural housekeeper especially, who is out of the 
range of gas and electricity, and who nevertheless wishes to 
free herself from the labor and dirt of coal and wood 
ranges, kerosene offers a solution of the fuel problem. 
Kerosene can be bought everywhere, the price averaging 12 
cents per gallon, with a saving of several cents per gallon 
if bought by the barrel. 

Kerosene burns with a slow heat, not to be compared with 
gas in intensity. The chief criticisms generally advanced 
against it is the odor, and possibly smoke present and it 
radiates more heat than gas. Neither of these accompani- 
ments however, need be present if the stove is properly 
cared for daily. The best type of stove is by all means that 
using a wick, as the "wickless" stoves are much more un- 
satisfactory and require more attention. 

Kerosene stoves are now manufactured in two, three, or 
four-burner models with an upper standard, warming shelf 
and portable oven, which make them compare in appearance 
and results quite favorably with gas stoves. They require, 
nevertheless, daily care in wiping off each wick and atten- 
tion to see that the wick is never raised too high or burns 
with "points" which will cause yellow, smoky flame instead 
of the blue flame necessary for perfect results. In the 
writer's opinion, a three-burner kerosene stove and a fireless 
cooker are the ideal country combination to supplant the 
laborious coal range with its waste of heat and imperfect 
control. In my summer home, with a family of eight, we 
consume between three and four gallons of kerosene a week. 
A fireless cooker is used. 

A late type of the "Perfection" oil stove contains a fireless 
cooker oven with thermometer, cabinet style, four burners, 
shelf, etc. in fact, a complete oil range. 



Gasoline is in somewhat bad repute as a fuel because of 
the many distressive accidents from the use of gasoline 
stoves. Most often, however, such accidents come from 
carelessness, such as filling the reservoir when the stove or 

Marketed by the Standard Oil Co. 

lamp is lighted, spilling the gasoline, knocking over the 
stove, etc. In the older styles the flame might easily be 
blown out by a draught of air, the gas would then continue 
to form and an explosion might result if a light were 
brought into the room. 

The best types of gasoline stoves are safe if used with 
intelligence and care. The supply tank can be placed in 
a different room and piped to the stove, the stove can be 
secured to the floor and placed away from draughts. 

A good gasoline stove gives a blue flame nearly equiva- 


lent to gas in intensity and so is a quicker fuel than kero- 
sene. The chief disadvantage is that the generator in the 
burner must be heated for some time before the burner 
can be lighted properly. Gasoline is more expensive than 
kerosene, costing from 14 to 25 cents a gallon. 

Acetylene Gas 

Acetylene gas is still another fuel being used more and 
more in country homes for cooking as well as for lighting. 
Acetylene generators, approved by the National Insurance 
Board, are safe if given intelligent care. The gas burns 
with a very intense blue flame and must be used in stoves 
and hot plates especially designed for it. The expense of 
using acetylene for cooking is greater than kerosene but not 

If a coal or wood stove must be used in winter, by all 
means have the fuel stored on the same floor level as the 
stove not in the celler. Some of the steel ranges are now 
provided with a sheet iron pipe from the ash pit of the stove 
to a metal ash can in the basement, through which the ashes 
may be dumped as necessary. This arrangement saves much 
labor and dirt and could be adopted in many cases. 


The most modern of all fuels is electricity, which while 
not a fuel proper, is a source of heat and thus a means of 
cooking. Several years ago there was scarcely a piece of 
electric cooking apparatus on the market, and the use of 
electricity was confined chiefly to lighting and power pur- 
poses. Today electricity, "the silent servant" is being 
adapted to not only the small portable cooking devices such 
a percolator, toaster, grill, hot plates, etc., but to the larger 
fixed equipment of stoves and ranges proper. 



No other fuel can be under such direct control. No other 
fuel equals it in entire absence of unpleasant gases, odors, 
soot or other products of combustion. It is without doubt 
the most ideal cooking fuel from the standpoint of cleanli- 
ness, direct control and absence of waste heat by radiation. 
Because it can be measured and the degree of heat so ac- 
curately obtained, electric cooking can be performed at 
any continuous desired degree. 


The fireless cooker ovens shut off the current at any desired temperature. 
The clock will *.urn on the current at the time set. 

At present however, electric cooking is not much used 
for two reasons : the present high rate of current, and the 
high cost of the equipment itself, owing to the fact that 
electric equipment can be made only of the highest grade 
materials and requires expensive metals in its construction. 
Many sections of the country have not progressed far 
enough to make separate rates for cooking and power from 
the usual rate charged for lighting. Other localities, notably 

I2 4 


Oregon and some of the western states, have a low "flat" 
rate which covers cooking and the use of electricity as 
power to operate washers, vacuum cleaners, etc. Thus the 
cost of current differs widely, and can only be summed up 
in the extreme figures of 3 cents to 15 cents per kilowatt 
hour, the average being about 10 cents in medium sized 


Cost per hour 



6c to 150 per kilo 

40c to 75c gal. 

Disc, stove, 
I burner 250 w. i%c to 

I burner 


Coal range 

per 1,000 feet 
$i per 100 feet 
I2c per gal. 
$5 to $9 per ton 

per month 

i medium top 

5 ft. per h. */ 3 c to 

i burner 2c to 3C 

i medium flame J^c 

Entire stove 

(without water 

back) 3/Sc to 


There are a few terms constantly used in speaking of 
electric apparatus which should be familiar to the home- 
maker. The first of these the "watt" is the unit of 
measurement of electrical energy. It is estimated by the 
kilo or 1,000 watts, usually expressed "kilo-watt" or kw. 

The second term is the volt, which is the unit of electrical 
pressure. Electricity may be considered as forced under 
pressure along the conducting wires to the stove or other 
apparatus. If a wire of large diameter is used, the pressure 
or "voltage" can be lower than if a lower pressure or 
voltage is employed. The common high pressure voltage 
used in houses is generally 200 to 250 volts ; low pressure 
being at 100 to no volts. 


pere" which is the unit of electrical quantity flowing 
through the wire. The number of amperes multiplied by 
the volts gives the number of watts (AXV=W), for 
instance, if the pressure used is 200 volts, and 5 amperes 
of current are absorbed in the circuit, the number of watts 
used is 200X5, equals 1,000. 


The coils of these newer electric stoves are visible and become red hot 
when the current is on 

Stoves, percolators and small appliances are rated in 
"watts" as for instance, a certain kettle may be rated at 
480, a grill or table cooker at 550, or a small hot plate stove 
may have two or three degrees of heat, say 600 for "high," 
and 300 for "low." This ability to change the degree of 
heat is one of the economies of electric cooking, as it is 
possible in many devices to change from a high degree, 
(perhaps 900) for full boiling, to a medium degree (600) 
for simmering and slower cooking to the lowest (300) 


used merely to keep foods warm. The user should always 
know the amount of volts supplied, as a device which is 
fitted for 220 volts supply will not heat when connected 
to a no volt supply, but if a device wired for a no volt 
current is connected to a 220 volt circuit it will be over- 
heated and probably ruined. Every electrical device from 
reputable manufacturers is marked at the bottom, as a 
toaster may be marked 206-215 V. 2.4 A. This means 
that the toaster may be used on any voltage between 206 


and 215 and that it will take 2.4 amperes of current. Mul- 
tiplying these figures would show that the toaster will use 
about 500 watts an hour. If the cost of electricity is 10 cents 
per kw.h. (1,000 watts per hour), the cost of running the 
toaster will be 5 cents an hour. Both the wattage and volt- 
age are usually given in catalogs of electric equipment, and 
should be noted carefully before buying. 

When electric energy is to be delivered to any great dis- 
tance "alternating" current of 2,000 volts or more is pro- 
duced, thus permitting small conducting wires to be used. 
As such high voltage is very dangerous to life, a small 
"transformer" is put in, usually on the pole nearest the 
house, which reduces the voltage to the desired intensity, 
most commonly to no volts. All household heating and 


I2 7 

lighting apparatus work equally well with "direct" or with 
"alternating" current of the required voltage, but direct cur- 
rent motors cannot be used on alternating current, nor 
alternating current motors on direct current circuits, except 
for a few special motors which may be used on both. For 
an alternating current motor also the number alternations 

Fan, grinder, polisher and cream whipper attachments at extra price. 

or the "cycles" of the current must be known. Direct cur- 
rent is used for electric cars and in small plants. Nearly 
all electric lighting circuits use alternating current. 


But while electricity has not come into its own as a fuel 
for reasons given above, it has more certainly entered the 
modern household as a source of power. In no other coun- 
try are there so many household labor-savers operated by 
electricity. First perhaps in importance is the increasing 
number of vacuum cleaners. Washing machines, mangles 
and other laundry equipment electrically operated, are being 


put on the market in greater numbers, thus robbing wash 
day of many of its former terrors. Dishwashers, coffee 
grinders, meat choppers, and other similar pieces come 
fitted for power. 

One piece of electric apparatus which is bound to come 
into more general use is the small utility motor. Such a 


motor can be attached so as to operate a common hand- 
power washing machine. It will also polish silver, freeze 
ice cream, grind meat or coffee and can be connected to a 
house pump, to a vacuum cleaner or many other pieces of 
household equipment. In one case where such a motor 
was attached to a simple ironing machine, all of the family 
ironing was done in one hour, which previously took over 
five hours by hand. In many rural sections electricity is 
being successfully used to operate churns, separators, grind- 
stones, pumps, etc. It should be only a step to continue 


its use to help the woman on the farm, lighten her wash- 
day labors, wash her dishes, or clean her house. A last 
most important use of the small motor is its application to 
the sewing machine so that there is no treadling, and the 
machine and material need only be guided by the worker. 


Watts Cost, on 

Consumed Basis of roc 

Per Hour Per Kw. 
Combination kettle, saucepan and disk stove 

for table cooking 550 5J^c per hour 

Coffee percolator, 3 pts 440 4/^c per hour 

Toaster 600 6c per hour 

Iron, 5 Ibs 450 4*/2C per hour 

Oven, 3 heats 150 ij4c per hour 

300 3c per hour 

600 6c per hour 

Electric radiator 1,000 or loc per hour 

750 or 7^c per hour 

500 5c per hour 

Small utility motor, for running sewing 
machine, chopping meat, polishing, venti- 
lating, operating washing machine or 

mangle 100 ic per hour 

Water heater 500 or 5c per hour 

i,oooor ice per hour 

2,000 or 2oc per hour 

3,000 3oc per hour 

Chafing dish 600 or 6c per hour 

300 or 3c per hour 

200 2c per hour 

Heating pad 60 or 3/5c per hour 

30 3/ioc per hour 

Baby's milk warmer 440 4 2/5c per hour 



Even though the modern fuels discussed above are less 
wasteful of heat than coal or wood, it is nevertheless neces- 
sary to economize fuel still further by the use of devices 
and utensils which conserve heat or make for economical 
cooking. Foremost among such equipment is the much- 
discussed tireless cooker, based on the principle of cooking 
with conserved heat in an airtight box, instead of by direct 

The first cookers were merely well insulated boxes into 
which the container of heated food was left to cook slowly 
until finished. Improvements were made by adding the 
so-called disks or radiators of soapstone or other metal 
with a rack to hold them, thus permitting roasting and 
baking as well as boiling and stewing. 

Another step in advance has been to combine the principle 
of the fireless in some regular cooking stove. For instance, 
there is the regulation gas or electric stove with usual 
burners. In addition, such a stove has an insulated oven or 
compartment corresponding to the "well" of the fireless 
with its heated radiators. Food is put into this compart- 
ment, heated for a short period, after which the fuel is 
turned off, when the food continues cooking by means of 
the heat radiated from the compartment walls, or from a 
disk or metal plate in the bottom of the compartment. In 
a gas-fireless stove recently used by the author, a 5-pound 
rib roast was thoroughly browned and cooked in the oven 
fireless, using only 20 minutes of actual fuel. In the ordi- 
nary oven about one hour and a quarter would have been 

The advantages of fireless cooker ovens are that they 
have greater cooking space, take up no extra room, require 
no preheating of hot plates, save more fuel and more time. 



In some of the later models, the cooking compartment, 
whether gas or electric, is under automatic control. In one 
gas stove, with a fireless cooker oven, the gas is turned off 
automatically at the time set and the cooking continues on 
the fireless principle (page 203). An electric stove with a 
fireless cooker oven will turn on the current automatically 


at the desired time and also turn off the current when the 
required temperature is reached (page 123). 

One of the best time and fuel savers is the automatic oven 
temperature regulator, which maintains indefinitely any de- 
sired oven temperature. This gives constant temperatures 
for baking, saves watching and some gas. With the regu- 
lator set for low heat, the cooking may continue for three 
to five hours, thus giving about all the advantages of a fire- 
less cooker, with none of the disadvantages. Still another 
cooker is an electric pressure cooker, heat insulated so that 
it acts like a fireless cooker. 



(1) It reduces fuel cost, sometimes as much as one-third or one 

(2) It lessens labor by eliminating a great deal of work attendant 
upon the usual cooking processes, as basting, looking at food, 

(3) It saves time by making unnecessary so much useless pot- 
watching and time spent in kitchen while foods are cooking, 
to prevent scorching, etc. 

(4) It cooks food with little loss of weight, owing to absence of 
evaporation or drying out, as in usual methods. 

(5) It brings out the juices and flavors of foods, and renders 
tender inexpensive cuts of meat as is almost impossible in 
any other way. 

(6) It is especially adapted for the long cooking of cereals, soups, 
beans, and large pieces like whole ham, etc. 

(7) The utensils used in fireless cooking do not scorch or stick; 
hence can be washed with the least effort. 


(1) Considerable planning and forethought necessary to operate 
one successfully. (This may be considered an advantage!) 

(2) Does not brown foods as well as an oven. Flavor not so good 
with some foods. 

(3) Unless used often the fuel or time saved does not justify 
the investment. 

(4) Requires intelligence, care and some experience to get good 


Another important fuel saver is the steam cooker. This 
consists of several round compartments fitted horizontally 
into each other, or a square compartment with sections, 
below both of which there is a water tank. Steam from 
this water penetrates all compartments and cooks the food. 
By accommodating from four to ten different dishes or 
foods, the steam cooker saves fuel which would be con- 
sumed if each of these were cooked on a separate burner. 
Steam cooking is also preferable to boiling, especially with 


vegetables, cereals, etc., because it causes less loss in weight, 
flavor, and particularly loss of important mineral salts 
which are too frequently extracted in the boiling process 
and thrown away. 

In a recent test it was proved that odors from different 
foods do not contaminate each other. Boiled cabbage, rice, 
custard and beets were all cooked at the same time. The 


custard and rice were entirely free from cabbage odor. 
This cooker can also be used excellently as a canning device, 
accommodating from 4 to 24 jars, according to size. 


We have also the "triplicate pail" or the 3 or 2 interlock- 
ing pots fitted to one burner not very useful. There are 
also various combinations of pots and insets which permit 
boiling in a lower compartment and the steaming of one or 
two foods above. The newest tea kettle with its "boiler 
inset" permits the cooking of oistard, rice, etc., at the same 



time that a quantity of water is being heated for other uses, 
in this way taking the place of the cumbersome double 

Several radiating plates are manufactured especially for 
gas stove or range use. One of these is triangular in shape 
so that it covers three burners at once, but uses the heat 
from only one, thus ' permitting foods on the other two 
burners to cook slowly by radiated heat alone. 

A new cooking pot which is 
an improvement on the cast- 
iron pot of our grandmother 
has a rack in the bottom and 
a lid fitted with a steam valve. 
The valve is left open at 



first while the food is being browned ; it is later closed so 
that the generated steam falls back on the food, thus in- 
creasing the tenderness, and the pot once heated requires 
only a minimum of fuel. A further development along this 
line is the pressure cooker, fitted with a clamped cover, 
pressure gauge and safety valve. These save much fuel 
and time and give excellent results. The small portable 
ovens to fit over one burner of a gas stove use about one- 
half as much gas as the large oven and are useful for cook- 
ing one or two small dishes quickly. 



Another group of modern utensils which save fuel is the 
devices operated on the vacuum principle. These are either 
in the form of bottles, jars or large containers which when 
filled with a food or liquid of a desired temperature, retain 
it for a considerable number of hours. Coffee made in the 
morning can be poured, scalding, into the vacuum bottle 
and be ready to serve at a later meal. Many foods may be 
kept in these containers without a second fuel expense for 
" warming-up." Platters and dishes with hot water pans 
underneath also permit foods 
to be kept hot for a consider- 
able time. There are, too, plat- 
ters and serving dishes made 
of a composition metal which 
retain heat for several hours 
and permit the most satisfac- 
tory service of meat, fish, etc., 
at the right temperature. Ov- 
ens with glass doors are said -BOLO" OVEN, ADJUSTABLE T,, 

r 1 i_ 11 ,1 TWO S1?ES BY SHELF IN 

to save fuel by allowing the CENTER, SAVES FUEL 

food to "be watched without 

needless opening, but some heat passes through the glass 
as "radiant heat." This could be reflected back into the 
oven by a piece of bright sheet metal over the glass. Vari- 
ous roasting pans and other utensils are fitted with insulated 
hoods or covers, all of which save heat by preventing radia- 


While many devices in other groups also save steps there 
are a few pieces of equipment which may be called dis- 
tinctly step savers. Chief among these is the kitchen cabinet 




which combines a pantry, table and shelf -space into one 
article of furniture. No one piece of kitchen equipment 
does more to co-ordinate utensils and working processes 
than the manufactured kitchen cabinet. The newest models 
have flour and sugar bins, cereal and spice containers, rack 
shelf space and adjustable moulding boards. When used 
with a stool, such a cabinet saves endless steps by grouping 
within arm's length of the worker both supplies, utensils 
and tools needed in many kitchen processes. 





The serving tray on wheels is another distinctive step 
saver. Several models are on the market, some with single, 
others with double tray, mounted on rubber-tired wheels 
which can be steered easily. Such a tray enables the home- 
maker to serve a complete meal with one or possibly two 
carryings of dishes, or to clear the table with similar ease. 
This kind of tray can also be used excellently as a stack- 
table when there is no drain to the right of the sink, or it 
can be used to wheel clean dishes to the pantry, avoiding 
constant trips and the dangers attendant on tray carrying. 
Larger and more massive styles are found in the typical hotel 
dishcart which can be used equally well in the large house- 

The so-called "Lazy Susan" or servette finds favor with 
the homemaker who is her own maid. This is a revolving 




circular wooden or glass disk, supported on a stand placed 
in the center of the table. Foods laid on the disk may be 
revolved to each person in turn, thus saving "passing," or 
frequent rising. It also saves space on the table by giving 
a place to bread and butter, sauces, condiments and other 
small dishes. 

A unique refrigerator most excellent in country homes 
particularly is a worth-while step saver. This "elevator 


ice-box" looks much like other small refrigerators, has three 
compartments, but is operated by clock-work pulleys. It 
is so installed that the pressure on a button in the floor 
causes the ice box to rise up into the kitchen ; or a similar 
pressure causes its descent into the cellar. This saves the 
hundreds of tedious steps entailed by the country home- 
maker who has to keep many food products "down cellar." 
And if the cellar is cool, this icebox can be satisfactorily 
used even without an ice supply. 

Any other device or equipment which co-ordinates work, 
such as these: a tool-basket with compartments, a house- 


maid's bucket with places for rags, soap, powder, etc., 
speaking tubes or "house" telephones, etc., can be grouped 
properly under the important head of step savers, and hence 
energy and effort savers. 


There is no one more important kitchen tool than the 
knife, and yet no other tool is so universally abused. A 
cook can be judged by her knives, and it is indeed rare to 
go into a kitchen and find either good knives or knives in 
good condition. Many make the mistake of thinking they 
can buy a well-made knife at a low price, but it is unwise to 
purchase an inexpensive knife when it is the most used tool 
in the kitchen which cuts our bread, prepares our vege- 
tables, slices meat, and without which no meal can be pre- 

The most efficient knife blade for general kitchen cutting 
is triangular in shape and is called the "sabatier" knife. 
In moderate size, it will cost 75 cents, and a larger size 
$1.00 or more. For cake and bread slicing a special knife 
with serrated edge cuts quicker and cleaner than the ordi- 
nary straight edge. Even the small vegetable preparing 
knives should be of the best quality, firmly riveted into 
the handle, and with points best adapted to their use of 
picking out eyes, etc. As was suggested previously, the 
important point about knives is not only their selection but 
their care. No knife or cutting device of any kind should 
be ruthlessly banged into a drawer along with nutmeg- 
grater, apple corer or other implements which unquestion- 
ably will dull the edge. Strips of leather or grooves of 
wood can be placed where convenient, and into these knives 
can be slipped, each having its separate pocket. Small knives 
and cutting devices in which the metal blade is not exposed 


between the wooden handle at the bottom can be fitted with 
screw eyes and hung up. 

Knives must be kept in good condition by frequent sharp- 
ening. Either a "steel" or sharpening stone is excellent if 
the worker understands how to get the best results, but 
for many one of the newer knife sharpening devices seems 


easier to use. One consists of a double set of wheels placed 
opposite each other. The knife blade is inserted between 
them, and the wheels are set revolving by means of a small 
handle at the side. These little sharpening devices are 
clamped permanently on the wall or table and make quick 
and correct sharpening possible. 

Here is a partial list of helpful small cutting devices 
which save time and make easier the preparing of vege- 
tables and other foods. 


Sabatier kitchen knife (medium) $1.00 

Sabatier kitchen knife (small) 60 

Vegetable parers 25 

Serrated breadknif e 50 

Breadslicer 50 

Medium sized shears 60 

Grape fruit knife with curved edge 50 


Vegetable Scalloper 25 

Strawberry huller 05 


No kitchen is complete without accurate measures. They 
are necessary to good cooking and scientific kitchen work, 
and to better marketing and purchasing because they en- 
able the homemaker to check up and co-operate with dealers 
and manufacturers. 

A reliable scale easy to read, should be placed in a 
permanent position preferably near the preparing table 
where most measuring is done. The best scale for house- 
hold use is the so-called pan or hanging scale. This type 
is preferable to others because here the weight is suspended 
from the dial and not placed over it. This means that there 
is less chance of the scale getting out of order, or of being 
tampered with as is the case where the weight is placed 
above the spring. Scales of this type come with attractive 
white enamel pan, glass protected dial, and a convenient 
hook for hanging. A dial registering only ten pounds is 
better than one indicating twenty because the clearer letter- 
ing and more space to each division permits easier reading 
of the fractions of the pound. 

If the stove used had no heat gauge, an oven thermometer 
will be required for accurate cooking. Such thermometers 
come fitted with an easel back so that they can be stood on 
either shelf or base of oven, and have large white figures 
on a black background for easy reading. A cooking 
thermometer of the tube type will also give more satisfac- 
tory results in the cooking of finer dishes. A glass graduate 
measure registering both ounces and tablespoons, and the 
familiar glass measuring cup and triplicate measuring spoon 
cannot be dispensed with. Quart and pint measures 
(liquid) with the funnels an integral part of the measure 
save time and the washing of separate utensils. A set of 


"dry" measures, peck, quart, pint, will assist in checking 
purchases and help along the cause of honest weights and 


No one group of minor kitchen furnishings has done 
more to make for neatness and sanitation than the increas- 
ingly popular group of paper products. The kitchen 
"roller" can easily be replaced by the paper towel roll in 
its attractive white holder, lessening the laundry labor and 
making for increased cleanliness. The same roll or sep- 
arate "towels" of paper can also be used for draining fried 
foods, making food containers, wiping up, and in general, 
taking the place of unsanitary "rags." 

Paraffine paper is developing daily new uses in keeping 
foods moist, wrapping cakes, etc. It may be secured in 
disks cut to fit any size, square or round pan, as for jelly 
glasses or cake making, thus saving time. The same disks 
can be used in connection with paper plates. It is possible 
by using a fresh disk at each course, to serve an entire 
meal (except soup of course,) on the same paper plate. The 
paper plate too, is no longer confined strictly to picnic use, 
but can be utilized at many summer meals for children, and 
indeed in most attractive forms at adult meals from time 
to time. Each season brings new paper dishes, bowls, etc., 
which are convenient for icebox use. Pies are found 
equally delicious if baked in a paper plate. 

Much has been said about paper bag cookery, and it need 
only be mentioned here that while not adaptable to all forms 
of cooking, the paper bag does save labor and pan-washing, 
and will be found especially helpful in cooking fish and 
certain meats and other dishes. The same paraffme bags 
used in cooking are excellent when used in the garbage 
pail, preventing waste from coming in contact with the 



metal can, thus corroding it, and permitting the entire bag 
of garbage to be easily moved. This plan was followed 
most successfully in Boston, and found a great preventive 
of the fly nuisance. 


1. Roll Paper Towel. 2. Paper I'lates. 3. Paraffined Sundae Dish. 

4. Oblong Dishes. 

Paper tablecloths are made exactly resembling damask. 
Paper napkins also are made in fine quality, and these and 
the new paper plates which look just like china can do much 
to reduce laundry and dishwashing for the busy homemaker. 


Oblong deep dishes, 1-3 Ibs ' .$1.75 to $2.06" per M 

Table plates, 5 inches in diameter $i-95 per 400 

Table plates, china finish 25c per dozen 

Paraffine disks, 5 to 6 inches IDC per M 

Paraffine disks, 9 to 10 inches 25c per M 

Roll paper towel 35c per 150 sheets 

Paper tablecloth, 66x72 inches $1.00 to $1.50 per dozen 

Paper napkins $1.00 to $2.50 per M 

Paraffine paper cooking bags, 15 to 60 bags for 25c, depending on size 

Paper cups 25c per 100 

Paraffine sundae dishes 500 per 100 

Paper dish cloths 3Oc per dozen 

Paper cake pan linings, round or square I5c per 50 


There are many minor helpful tools, many of which can 
be justified largely on sanitary grounds. Others, like a 
good canner, will do much to save labor and give better re- 
sults in this important part of food preparation. Still others 
make for neatness, for skill, or fill other demands of the 
efficient kitchen. The following list could be expanded 
indefinitely : 

Canning machine. 

Sanitary egg holder, prevents breakage. 

Milk bottle cap, makes pitcher of bottle and keeps milk clean. 

Cream dipper to remove cream from quart bottle. 

Cream syphon. 

Glass butter and food containers. 

Gas lighters, do away with burnt matches, safer, quicker. 

The subject of Helpful Tools will be touched upon further 
in the next chapter on Cleaning and in Food Planning , the 
Laundry, and elsewhere. 

In the endeavor to save time and labor in housekeeping 
it must be remembered that correct planning, good practice 
and efficient head work are far more effective than the most 
elaborate and expensive equipment, without efficient manage- 



1. In your housekeeping at present, which seems most 

important and why (a) to save time, (b) to save 
labor, (c) to save money? 

2. All things considered, what fuel is best for you to use 

for cooking in winter? In summer? 

3. Your method of washing dishes how can you im- 

prove it? 

4. Based on the study of your schedule of work, what 

would be your next purchase of helpful household 
tools, if you were free to choose? 

5. Tell of your failures in the purchase of household equip- 




Shelf for bottles and cleansers. 

Brooms, mops, etc., on separate hooks. 

Bag for string, paper, gloves, etc. 

Labels, and a definite place for each article make it easy to quickly 
find the right tool. Using Oliver cleanser. Note long handled scrub brush 
and mop wringer. 




INCREASINGLY high standards of sanitation in the 
home have made cleaning one of the most important 
divisions of housework. Probably a house that was 
regarded as clean a century ago would not be considered 
"clean" in our modern sanitary sense, which disproves of 
large carpets, tufted furniture, and an excess of draperies 
and ornaments. This high cleaning standard results in a 
definite money expense, and in a time expense on the part 
of homemaker and houseworker. In many homes, cleaning 
is one long drudgery, consuming hours in disagreeable and 
fatiguing work. How can a home be kept satisfactorily 
cleansed without too great an expense of time and effort ? 


First, a clearer idea of the term cleaning must be under- 
stood. As generally used, it would appear to be a single 
piece of work. But, like many other household tasks, 
cleaning is composed of many different processes, many of 
them complex and done with different tools and motions, as : 

1. SWEEPING carpets, rugs, bare floors, tufted furniture, etc. 

2. WIPING or scrubbing windows, walls, tiles, porcelains, etc. 
. 3. DUSTING furniture, woodwork, walls and ornaments. 

4. POLISHING silver, brass and other metal objects, utensils. 

"Cleaning," therefore, may be any one of these processes, 
or several of theVn, and in cleaning the ordinary room we 
find all of them included. 


Again, cleaning is almost entirely muscular or physical 
work or exercise more than any other kind of housework. 
To make a broad comparison, it might be said that the 
several steps of cleaning can be likened to different athletic 
exercises, as tennis, ball, rowing, skating, etc. We know 
that in tennis certain bodily motions are gone through, while 
in playing ball other kinds of motions are performed. So, 
too, an analysis of cleaning and its steps shows that each 
different step is a different kind of muscular adjustment. 
That is, sweeping (i) with a common broom uses definite 
sets of muscles in the back and arms with a broad swing 
and play; again, scrubbing (2), as commonly practiced in a 
prostrate position, uses an entirely different adjustment of 
back, arms, and trunk. In the third step of cleaning 
dusting (3) there is again a different motion of the body, 
much less violent, and done chiefly with one arm and a 
slight stooping. In polishing (4) the worker may either 
stand quietly or sit, using only the arms. Other special 
cleaning steps, like beating rugs, shaking draperies, or clean- 
ing walls with a long-handled tool, will require other and 
differing muscular adjustment or physical motion. 


The usual method of "cleaning" a room is to perform 
several of these differing steps consecutively in the same 
room, changing rapidly from one to another. That is, if a 
group of rooms were to be cleaned thoroughly, the worker 
would first sweep, then dust, then wipe floors in one room, 
and then repeat the four processes in the next room, and 
so on. This would mean a frequent change from one mus- 
cular process to another, or, as it is called, a "change of 
shift." But a study of this method proves that it is most 
fatiguing and time-taking. Every time there is a change of 
shift (from sweeping to scrubbing or from any one step to 


another), there is waste motion and effort. The reason is 
that it takes time to "speed up" on any one muscular act, 
and for the muscles to become adjusted to any repeated 
consecutive motion. In tennis, ball, etc., the first efforts are 
never as easy, smooth and rapid as when the player has 
been performing for some time and "gotten into his stride." 
The same holds true of cleaning, and the more rapid the 
change of shift from one step to another, the less easy, 
smooth, and effortless the work. The usual cleaning methods 
of jumping rapidly from sweeping to scrubbing, etc., can be 
compared to an attempt to jump from tennis to rowing, and 
from that to swimming or other sport, and expect to do 
smooth, rapid work in each. No wonder a worker is "all 
fagged" when she attempts to work in a way no athlete 
would follow! 


Efficient cleaning, therefore, depends on avoiding rapid 
change in shifts of work; or, to put it differently, to con- 
tinue one cleaning process as long as possible before chang- 
ing to another. The idea works out concretely in the fol- 
lowing way: 

Let us suppose that it is general cleaning day on an 
upstairs floor with four bedrooms and a bath. The usual 
practice would be to sweep, dust, and mop each room sep- 
arately, that is, with rapid change of shift ; but let us work 
the new way, and sweep all rooms through consecutively, 
next dust them, and last mop them, continuing a similar 
process through four rooms without a break, instead of 
stopping in each to change. Similarly, any special cleaning 
process, like washing windows, should be continued through 
as many rooms as possible, and one kind of work should not 
be dropped and another allowed to interrupt it. 



Not only did the old method of rapid shift change cause 
fatigue and lose time, but its second fault lies in the fre- 
quent handling of tools necessitated. As was stated, each 
step of dusting, scrubbings, etc., is done with different tools 
broom, bucket, cloth, etc. Now under the old method 
each change meant change and handling of the tools. Room A 
would be swept and the broom dropped to pick up the scrub 
bucket, and this in turn laid aside for the duster. The same 
handling would prevail in rooms B, C, and D. In certain 
house arrangements this extra handling would be very 

Contrast this handling of each piece many times with the 
handling under the efficient plan: In this case, the broom 
would be picked up with which to clean Room A, and never 
laid down until rooms B, C, and D had been swept and the 
broom laid down with one final handling. Similarly, a 
bucket used in room A could be carried straight through 
the other rooms. Not until work is closely watched and 
motions noticed does it appear how much useless time and 
effort is caused by change of shift in work. 


These facts are clearly brought out in the following time 
studies of cleaning several rooms under the old and the 
new plan: 

Three Rooms Cleaned Separately 

Preparing Rooms for Sweeping 18 minutes 

Sweeping Rooms 21 minutes 

Dusting Rooms 19 minutes 

Total time 58 minutes 

(Three handlings of each tool.) 


Three Rooms Cleaned Consecutively 

Preparing 15 minutes 

Sweeping 17 minutes 

Dusting 15 minutes 

Total time 47 minutes 

(One handling of each tool.) 

This rule of change of shift and its results apply particu- 
larly to such tasks as window washing, where exactly sim- 
ilar motions are done with each successive window. Nine 
windows cleaned consecutively take less time than nine 
windows cleaned intermittently with stops for other work. 
Several beds made one after the other (witness the sleeping 
car porter!) can be made in less time, each, than if the 
worker makes a bed, and then stops to brush up or do other 
work. It follows, then, that such tasks as windows, airing 
of bedding in several rooms, shaking rugs, etc., should be 
done in as "wholesale" a method as possible. The only 
exception to this avoidance of shift-change may be when 
rooms are so far apart, or on different floors, that the extra 
walking entailed might be as time-taking as the old method. 
The fatigue is always less when work is uninterrupted. 
Change also causes nervous adjustment, and it is not so 
much the work itself, which causes the fatigue, as it is the 
"jump" -from one kind of work to another. This has been 
quite conclusively proved in various tasks by different 
workers. Therefore the woman who wishes to work with 
the least friction will avoid such planning that will force 
her to do too many kinds of work on the same day, or too 
many kinds of tasks in the same hour. 


Each cleaning task should have its own set of directions 
or instructions, since each step of cleaning is done with dif- 
ferent tools and in a different way. This "standard" or 


best way, these rules, can be called "standard practice," 
just as in industries we have written rules for the way this 
piece of work or that should be done. We have long used 
"standard practice" or definite instructions in cooking, as 
in recipes and the kind of bowl, spoons, etc., to use. The 
reason why our meals are so often better cooked than our 
rooms are cleaned, is almost solely because there have been 
no written directions or "practice" for the latter, while there 
was for the former. There cannot be a properly cleaned 
room if some one step is forgotten, any more than there can 
be a properly made cake if some needed ingredient is 

Standard practice means, then, written directions as to 
method and tools, and time. While these directions may 
vary slightly owing to the different construction and furnish- 
ing of homes, these following few "standard practices" will 
help in making such as will exactly suit the particular needs 
of any special home. 


TOOLS Carpetsweeper ; long handle dustpan ; dustless duster ; long 

handle string mop. 
METHOD i. Pick up clothing, shoes and soiled linen (beds thrown 

back in advance, windows open). 

2. Make bed, leaving valance, if any, tucked up. 

3. Remove burned matches, papers, etc., from bureau, table, etc. ; 

arrange and dust toilet articles, placing waste in dustpan 

4. Sweep rug with carpet sweeper. 

5. Dust furniture, window and door trim, and baseboard edge. 

6. Use string mop around rug edges and under bed, replacing 

chairs, etc., at same time; let down bed valance. 

7. Pull shades to half, allow sufficient ventilation. 

It would be easy to modify this "standard" if there were 
a fireplace in the room and a hand washstand ; in that case 
the "standard" could be amended: 


Remove ashes and lay wood for fresh fire (to precede step 3). 
Scour basins and bring fresh water (to follow step 3). 

In this way a "standard" for any given set of conditions 
can be worked out simply by setting down in the best order 
the various steps which are needed to do the entire work 
in the most satisfactory manner. 


TOOLS Long-handled toilet brush or tongs. 

Impregnated metal polish cloth. 

Cleaning cloth and cleansing powder. 

Wet mop and bucket. 

Disinfectant, soap, linen. 

METHOD i. Remove soiled linen and bring new supply, also soap, 
paper roll if necessary, and. lay on convenient chair. 

2. Clean windows and medicine closet mirror and light 


3. Wipe window ledge and exposed woodwork, including 


4. Rub faucets, towel bar and other metal parts with im- 

pregnated metal cloth. 

5. Clean bathtub, then washbasin with cloth and cleanser, 

and last, the stand supporting toilet. 

6. Wipe floor with mop, being sure to get under tub. 

7. Empty pail into toilet, flush ; clean with toilet tongs, 

flush again; pour down disinfectant and replace lid. 

8. Lay linen, soap and other supplies in place. 

(On one floor) 

CONDITIONS Large rugs, hardwood border, 4 rooms opening on 

central hall. 
TOOLS Carpet or vacuum sweeper ; long-handled dustpan, string 

mop ; dustless duster for furniture ; flannel duster for 

ornaments and glass. 
METHOD Open windows top and bottom about one foot, carefully 

pin back draperies. 


TRIP : i. Assemble all tools at entrance of room A; take both 
dusters and dustpan in hand ; pick up waste into dustpan 
while dusting and replacing ornaments and tops of tables, 
bureau, etc., and dusting baseboard, door and window trim 
and exposed woodwork. Do this in rooms A, B, C and D, 
returning to Room A entrance and exchanging for sweeper 

TRIP 2 2. Use sweeper in rooms A, B, C and D, returning and ex- 
changing for string mop, using this on all rooms as before. 
Return with sweeper and exchange for string mop. 

TRIP 3 3. Use string mop in rooms A, B, C and D; return to en- 
trance A (arranging furniture if necessary). 

LAST STEP Gather all tools from entrance A and carry direct back 
to house closet. 

Under these conditions, dusting precedes using the 
sweeper, so that any dust or waste from shaking and han- 
dling books and ornaments may fall on the floor and be 
swept up. 

Sweeping precedes mopping with oil or string mop, so as 
to avoid any tracking on the nicely oiled floor. Either with 
carpet sweeper or vacuum cleaner this is the best order : 

1. Dusting. 

2. Using sweeper. 

3. Using oil mop. 

If window cleaning must be included on this day (al- 
though it should not be included, if possible) it should be 
done after dusting; if the walls and pictures need thorough 
cleaning, they should be done before dusting. In other 
words, it is only common-sense, as well as efficiency, to 
perform first those processes which cause moving and shak- 
ing of objects. In general, the work must be done from 
the ceiling down, as : 

1. Ceiling. 

2. Lighting fixtures. 

3. Pictures and mirrors, hangings. 


4. Ornaments and books on tables and horizontal surfaces. 

5. Furniture (including window, door and baseboard). 

6. Rugs or carpets on floor. 

7. Exposed wood on floor. 

If a wet process like scrubbing must be done, it should 
follow the rule for floor cleaning, and thus follow the carpet 

It is thus seen how easy it is to make "standard practice" 
instructions for any given set of conditions. This "prac- 
tice" had best be written down when once worked out, and 
not left to the memory. It must include, as shown above, 
the tools, the method, and the time. This last element can 
easily be found after the method has become mere routine. 
It may be, "Bathroom, 25 minutes," or bedroom, "15 min- 
utes," or whatever the case may be. In this way the "stand- 
ard practice" becomes a means of developing a good 

Copies of this "practice" may be written on cards to be 
pasted or tacked in an inconspicuous part of the room, or 
included in the instructions to a hired worker in her 
instruction book. 


Just as a special place like a kitchen cabinet is needed for 
keeping kitchen tools in order, so there must be a definite 
location for the equally important tools of cleaning. Such 
a place is the so-called "house closet." This may be small 
or large, specially built or developed from the waste space 
in a back stairs, etc. 

In country homes an excellent place for such a closet is 
on the back porch or at the head of cellar stairs or between 
kitchen and washhouse. The closet should be high enough 
to accommodate long-handled brooms and mops hung up, 
with additional space above for a small shelf. Good dimen- 


sions are 6 feet high by 4 feet wide by i foot deep. This 
permits the floor space to conveniently hold coal hods, scrub 
buckets, etc. (See page 146.) 

Each tool should have a screw eye of the right size put 
in the handle ; then in the strip under the shelf right angle 
up-hooks can be placed at convenient distances apart, on 
which the tool can be hung by its screw-eye. On the shelf 
can be placed bottles and boxes of cleaning preparations. 

The closet is not complete without a label marking the 
right place of each tool. If these are pasted on and then 
shellacked, they will stay in place for years. A shoe-bag 
with different sized pockets is excellent for holding dusters, 
twine, newspapers, -cleaning gloves, etc. Even in such a 
closet the grouping of tools can be carried out, and duster, 
dustpan, and mop, or other combination, hung together so 
that they can easily be picked up at once. 


If one general term could be applied to the manner of all 
cleaning up to the present, that term could well be "scatter- 
ing" ; for in all the various steps of sweeping and dusting, 
the work was done in such a way as to scatter and spread 
the dust particles (and bacteria) from one place to another. 
The corn broom swept the dust out of the carpet, only to 
raise it in the air so that it lodged on pictures, mouldings, 
etc. Again, the feather duster removed the dust from these 
same pictures only to have it fall on the floor, and thus 
went on a continuous cycle of dust which was never entirely 
eliminated from the house after all. 

The new sanitary ideal today has for its watchword 
"absorption." The broom is being largely replaced by the 
suction method of the modern vacuum cleaner, and the dust- 
less duster holds dusts as it cleans. No one invention is so 
responsible for new cleaning methods as is the so-called 


vacuum cleaner. The principle on which these are built is 
that of suction, or the intake of air. This suction is devel- 
oped in various ways, and takes with it the dust as well as 
air from whatever surface the cleaner is operated on. There 
are four broad types of cleaners as follows : 

(1) Large portable vacuum cleaners, dustbag within the 

cleaner; hand or electric. 

(2) Small vacuum cleaners, dustbag outside the cleaner; 


(3) Carpet sweeper, box model vacuum cleaner (hand 


(4) Stationary machines, located in basement, with pipes 

to all floors. 


There is a slight distinction between vacuum cleaner and 
suction cleaner. In the vacuum cleaner, a diaphragm or 
rotary pump is used to create a partial vacuum in each 
stroke. The surrounding atmosphere then rushes in to fill 
this vacuum, bringing in dust. At the end of each stroke, 
when operated slowly, the vacuum model loses "pull" for 
an instant, but this is not noticeable at full speed. This type 
of cleaner can make a very strong pull. 


In the suction type of cleaner using power, the suction is 
created by means of fans or turbines operated by a small 
motor encased in some portion of the cleaner. These fans 
in revolving cause an intake of air, bringing with the air 
dust, small fragments of paper, matches, etc. In this type 
of cleaner the "pull" is not very strong, but a large volume 
of air can be moved, permitting the use of a wide opening. 
In the suction type of cleaner operated by hand, the suction 
is created generally by a pair of bellows which, in being 
shut, caused a similar but less violent suction of air and 
intake of dust. In the hand type, however, the effort of the 
operator is needed to make the necessary power. In the 
suction type also there is a continuous flow of air, while in 
the vacuum type there is a distinct "pull" for an instant, as 
mentioned above, at the end of each stroke. 

The large portable vacuum cleaner (electric) is made 
with a powerful motor and is particularly suited to cleaning 
large houses or where there are many thick, all over rugs, 
carpets, and a quantity of draperies. This type of cleaner 
is always used with a hose attachment inserted in the intake 
opening. At the other end of the hose is what is called 
the nozzle opening, which is the actual part of the cleaner 
moved over any given surface. This nozzle tool may be a 
tool for the floor, for mattresses and tufted furniture, for 
draperies, etc., etc. The price of such a large portable 
cleaner is about $75.00 because of the cost of a powerful 

The large portable vacuum cleaner (hand) is operated by 
an air pump and lever, and preferably is worked by two 
persons, one to pump and one to move the hose attachment 
wherever necessary. In both of these portable type ma- 
chines, the dustbag is within the body of the cleaner. This 
hand portable when operated by two people does almost as 
good work as any electric machine, but the labor is consid- 



crable. It comes fitted with all similar attachments, and 
costs from $20.00 to $30.00. 

The small portable cleaner (electric) is made in many 
models and seems the best type suited for average use in 
homes wired for electricity. With this type, the dustbag is 
on the outside, the machine is light in weight, and can be 


operated on carpets and floor without a hose attachment. 
The hose is necessary here only to clean draperies, mat- 
tresses, etc., and anything off the floor level. The advan- 
tages of such a machine are that it can easily be taken up 
and downstairs by a woman, that it rolls easily, that it takes 
little storage space when not in use. The price of such a 
cleaner is from $30.00 to $45.00. 


The sweeper type of cleaner is operated by hand. It 
consists of a box built like a carpet sweeper in which is 
contained a bellows. These bellows are operated whenever 
the cleaner is moved backward or forward over the carpet, 
the suction created drawing the dust from the carpet. No 
attachments can be used with this type, which is strictly for 
floor use and is suitable only for carpets and large rugs. 


It does not clean bare floors well. This type is somewhat 
heavy and fatiguing to work in comparison to the usual 
carpet sweeper. In some models of this box type a sweeper 
just like a carpet sweeper is combined so that the carpet is 
swept at the same time that dust is sucked out of it. They 
cost from $5.00 to $12.00. 

While the powerful electric machine and even the small, 
light machines suck dust from a given surface and pick up 
lint, matches, etc., most of them do not pick up threads, 
crumbs, or, in other words, brush the carpet at the same 
time that they clean it pneumatically. In order to provide 


for this picking up of threads, many cleaners, both large and 
small, are fitted with brush attachments either within the 
body of the cleaner or mounted without on a small platform. 
It is well to note this point in a cleaner before purchasing. 



The first thing to decide before purchasing is the condi- 
tions in the home in which the cleaner is to be used. If 
there are large areas of all-over carpet, many draperies, etc., 
a powerful portable type will be needed. If small rugs, 
matting, and bare floors, the light-weight electric cleaner 
can be used. If it is more important to have the draperies, 
tufted furniture, etc., cleaned by this method, select a 
machine that has a direct inlet to the fan-chamber instead 


of an attachment that clamps to the floor suction nozzle. 
In all cases, select a cleaner having a wide suction nozzle, 
about 10 or 12 inches, so that there will be enough width 
in the cleaner nozzle to clean a sufficient width at one time. 
Aluminum parts and case make the lightest cleaner to move 
and use. The cleaner should be mounted on rollers so that 
they can be moved readily. The electric machine should be 
equipped with a small switch on the handle so that it is not 
necessary to reach up to the light socket to turn the current 
on and off. 

Note the details of bellows construction, the materials 
of the dustbag and general construction before purchasing. 
It does not pay to buy a "cheap cleaner" which will become 
worthless in a short time. The cost of the electric models 
depends on the power and quality of the motor. Know 
also the voltage, for while most cleaners come fitted to a 
100 to i2O-volt socket, the voltage should be known before 

Never attempt to run an electric model over a damp place 
or allow it to suck up water, as this will spoil the motor. 
In operating the cleaner, be sure to elevate the suction nozzle 
at the right height from the surface. This may make all 
the difference between fair and excellent cleansing. 


There are two types of permanent vacuum systems, one 
operated by electric motor, and the other by a motor oper- 
ated by water pressure. In this case pipes are laid in the 
walls, having openings near the baseboard of each room, 
and connected with the motors in the basement. It is then 
only necessary to attach to these floor openings the hose, 
and thus clean all rooms easily. The present cost of such 
systems is fairly high ; but in new houses they are worth 
considering, as such systems certainly make for "dustless 


homes." Many hotels and institutions are so equipped, and 
the cost of installation is balanced by reduced worker's and 
cleaning women's cost. 

The water motor system costs much less than the elec- 
trically operated motor system. It, however, needs a pres- 
sure of about 40 pounds to the square inch in order to be 
satisfactory. The cost of installation of electric systems is 
from about $200 up, depending on the number of rooms. 



Broom sweeping (outside on porch) 10 

(Moving to porch and replacing, 6 minutes) 

Hand vacuum sweeping 18 

Electric vacuum sweeping 12 



Broom 4 

Hand vacuum 10 

Electric 6 

From the point of time, the vacuum cleaner gives little if 
any saving, the chief advantage being only in the absence of 
the scattering of dust, and in the somewhat greater thor- 
oughness of the work, and the fact that the rugs need not be 
lifted from the floor. It is the most labor saving where 
there is a large rug, or stair treads covered with thick carpet 
which it is almost impossible for a broom to get at. On bare 
floors the hand vacuum cleaner is almost totally useless ; the 
electric models, even when fitted with a floor tool, do not do 
the work as easily as a long handled string mop. It is on 
carpets only that the vacuum cleaner is most worth while. 
Small rugs where there are large bare floor areas can be as 


easily cleaned of surface dirt with a carpet sweeper. The 
thorough suction cleaning given by a vacuum necessitates 
less frequent cleaning, which is the great advantage. 

In the tirne studies given above, the amount of effort is 
important ; it took less effort to clean the rug by broom 
than by hand vacuum cleaner. In the electric cleaner test, 
the effort was much less than in either the hand vacuum or 
the broom method. 


Another great broad difference between the tools of to-day 
and yesterday, is that the modern ones are generally 
mounted on handles. The scrub brush, the hair brush, the 
many kinds of fibre duster tools, even the dustpan, have 
at last been elevated by being placed on handles. Why stoop 
to the dustpan, when it can come to you? Why use a 
bundle of coarse cloths on a floor to mop with, and bend 
prostrate over the task, if you can fasten the same cloths on 
a stick and get better results? 

"But I can't scrub so clean if I don't get right down on 
the floor," some women may say. We believe this is only 
imagination, and a habit of working, rather than the facts. 
There is practically no cleaning tool which cannot be 
mounted on a handle and give better results than the same 
tool used in the hands. This is because the "handle" conies 
under the laws of the lever. By test it has been proved 
that a handle, even a short one, acts as a fulcrum or point 
of leverage, so that greater pressure is exerted by means 
of a handle than if the hand were used direct. 

Some interesting experiments were made on lengths of 
handles of cleaning tools. Three women of varying heights, 
5 ft. 3 in., 5 ft. 6 in., and 5 ft. 8 in., were tested and grasped 
the handle as follows : 



"Why stoop to the dustpan when it can come to you?" 




5 feet 3 inches 5 feet 6 inches 5 feet 8 inches 
Long handle scrub 

brush i foot i inch I foot 6 inches I foot 9 inches 

from end from end from end 

Short handle scrub 

brush i foot 4 inches i foot 9 inches i foot 10 inches 

from end from end 

Oil mop i foot 5 inches i foot 6 inches i foot 9 inches 

from end from end 

Broom i foot 5 inches i foot 6 inches i foot 8 inches 

from end from end 

From these figures and other data in regard to the position 
they took as they worked, it appears that each height of 
worker has a fairly constant distance apart at which she uses 
her arms, no matter what the length of the handle of the tool. 
Now if the handle is short, the worker has to stoop over to 
get into the particular position in which her arms remain 
the proper distance apart ; if the handle is long, her hands 
assume this comfortable distance without stooping. 

Again, the angle at which a long-handled tool is used has 
much influence on the amount of pressure exerted on the 
mophead or whatever it may be. If the mop or broom could 
be held straight down, the same amount of pressure exerted 
at the handle would be given to the mophead. The further 
the mophandle inclines from the vertical, the less its pres- 
sure. Now we see where the real benefit of a long handle 
comes in ; it permits the worker to exert at a standing height 
the same amount of pressure that she would have to bend 
greatly to exert, if the handle were short. 

The facts to remember in order to make cleaning more 
efficient are : 

i. Any handled tool should preferably be 5 feet or over 
in length. 


2. The straighter the handle is held to the vertical, the 

greater the results with any given amount of 

3. Grasp handles with one hand .as far down the handle 

as possible this gives a longer "force-arnf" to the 

handle, and hence greater pressure on the mop itself. 

On hand is used chiefly to direct the handle, while the 

other, sometimes right and sometimes left, depending on 

individual cases, gives the real force. 

By the use of the handle, then, it is possible to sweep, mop, 
dust, and scrub, upright and with less effort, the same work 
done with a short handle or none at all. The longer the 
handle, the straighter the position of the worker, the fur- 
ther down the force is applied the easier and more efficient 
will be the work. 


As has been pointed out, "cleaning" is exercise to a 
greater or less degree. Why not, then, dress, as if it were 
exercise, in order to receive the maximum benefit from the 
work? No heavy skirts, "pull" at the arms, tight waists or 
shoes can result in comfortable work. While much may 
be said in favor of the one-piece dress, because of its neat 
appearance, it has been found that a two-piece garment gives 
more freedom if planned right. Such a dress is a modified 
"jumper" consisting of a plain, short, gored skirt and a 
jumper waist like a middy blouse. This allows very great 
freedom of movement to both waist and arms such as needed 
in wiping, stooping, etc. Since the waist of this dress ex- 
tends four or five inches below the natural waist line, it 
permits a great deal of bodily motion without exposing the 
belt. It should have elbow sleeves and low collar, and can 
be made in seersucker, chambray, or similar materials. 

No detail is more important than the kind of shoe, and 


while it may seem economy to wear "cast-off" best shoes 
at work, it generally brings poor results in causing sore feet. 
Only a broad, low heel, preferably of rubber, or a rubber 
soled "athletic" shoe or. a "nurse's" shoe should be worn by 
one doing much cleaning, and who does not wish to risk a 
"turned ankle" at rapid work. 

A cap is also a needful accessory, keeping the hair from 
coming loose about the face, as well as serving as a dust 
protector. Emphasis is here put upon the kind of clothing 
because right, neat clothing affects one's self-respect. The 
reason why many women think of cleaning and similar 
tasks as degrading, even, is because in the past the worker 
looked like a "slavey," and was so uncomfortable about 
her appearance that it made the work drudgery in her 
mind. It seems, too, that a worker does neater, more careful 
work if she is neatly attired and avoids doing careless, 
sloppy work; while if dressed in a slovenly manner, her 
work is slovenly too, because she "doesn't care how she 
looks." It is possible to do even mopping and cleaning 
without becoming a "sight." Training in working in an 
efficient manner results in a neater appearance, and vice 
versa. It is not how much we get done, but how well we 
get it done, with comfort to ourselves and others, that means 
true efficiency. 

There is also the "bungalo" dress, which is merely a large 
allover apron with kimono sleeves, buttoning in the back. 
This has been found very neat and serviceable as a cleaning 
garment, because it permits little clothing used under it, 
and a great deal of arm movement. Another dress found 
desirable is a "reversible" dress which fastens with only 
one button! This is made in one piece, of a comfortable 
short sleeve type, and buttons at the belt. It can be reversed 
and worn on the other side, if desired. Its advantage is the 
easy way in which it is fastened. 


So many women say, "I hate housework because it is so 
hard on my hands !" It is, however, possible to preserve the 
nice looks of the hand considerably by the use of gloves of 
various kinds. The following have been proved worth 
while : 

Rubber gloves dishwashing, toilet cleansing, washing baby nap- 
kins. (Avoid using with grease; good pairs cost $i.) 

Large white cotton "teamster's" gloves for sweeping and dust- 
ing; for silver and metal cleansing; while using many kinds of 
devices in the hand. (Cost 10 cents a pair.) Grease the hands 
with cold cream before using. 

Yellow oilskin may be used instead of rubber as they last longer. 
For same purposes and also as sweeping gloves. Cost about 50 

Rub cold cream on the hand before beginning heavy 
cleaning, slip on gloves. After work, rinse hands, and rub 
in an astringent like benzoin water. 


Cleaning is exercise, but even exercise must be done 
properly. It is possible to twist and contort the body un- 
necessarily. The use of long handle tools will allow the 
worker to stand more often than stoop. But there is even 
a best way to stoop, and that is from the waist and not with 
the back. Go upstairs on the ball of the foot, and not the 
heel. Expand the chest even while using the arms with 
broom, mop, etc. Never prostrate and shake the body as in 
usual floor scrubbing, but choose some tool that will permit 
standing work. Pails can be carried with less effort if the 
body is rightly balanced. Tool handles can be grasped more 
handily, so that the hand is not made misshapen and awk- 
ward, just as there is an easy, graceful way of handling 
a table fork and knife, and one that is awkward. Try and 


assume comfortable positions. Train the hands to quick, 
deft action, even in picking up floor cloths, grasping handles, 
levers, etc. In this way the highest results and exercise will 
replace drudgery. 


The needs of homes differ owing to their differing fur- 
nishings ; the following list covers the needs of many homes 
in a complete and yet not expensive way. If certain tools, 
as vacuum cleaner, are included, this will dispense with tools 
doing equivalent work. (Pre-war prices are given.) 



1. VACUUM OR SUCTION CLEANER for thorough carpet, p . 

floor and drapery cleaning. 

Electric models $25.00 $75.00 

Hand models (2 persons) 20.00 and up 

2. CARPET SWEEPER for threads, and surface cleaning 

every day 3.50 and up 

3. LONG HANDLE (5 feet) HAIR BROOM for exposed 

wood, tile and linoleum sweeping. 1.50 

4. SHORT HANDLE (3 feet) HAIR BROOM for sweeping 

fireplace, picking waste into dustpan 75 

5. DRY OR OIL STRING MOP for dusting or oiling wood 

floors 75 and up 

6. CORN BROOM only for sidewalks or coarse porch 

floors, etc., or rugs swept outside .45 and up 


handle, to clean walls, mouldings, ceilings, pic- 
tures etc. when no vacuum cleaner is used... 1.25 and up 

8. SHORT HANDLE FIBRE BRUSH for dusting stairs... .50 

9. DUSTLESS DUSTERS for furniture and woodwork. 

Flannel or silk duster for ornaments, piano, 

etc., glassware 25 each 

10. LONG HANDLED DUSTPAN, with trap 50 

11. RADIATOR BRUSH, bristles set in a thin, narrow han- 

dle for cleaning between radiator pipes 50 




1. OLIVER SANITARY CLEANER long handle with rub- p r j ce 

her grip at base to hold mop cloth ; excellent 

for cleaning tile, linoleum, etc $ 1.25 

2. STRING MOP for coarse work on porches, cellars, 

etc.; not needed generally if the "Oliver" is 
used 50 


motion of foot wrings the mop head. Only 

needed if string mop is used 1.50 


Bucket 50 

Basket 25 

Use sponge and soap basket on edge. 

5. SCRUB CLOTHS of knitted heavy crash 22x22 is a 

good size 25 

(Such cloths are much better than "cast-offs" 
and rags, which are hard to clean, and do un- 
even work.) 

6. HANDLED SCRUB BRUSH regular scrub brush on 

4-foot handle 50 

7. WINDOW WASHER contains water, and is fitted 

with both rubber edge and felt dryer mounted 
on long handle. Useful for many high, out- 
side window work 1 .00 

8. WINDOWCLEAN CLOTH inside work, needs no water, 

and replaces chamois for mirrors, globes, etc. .25 

9. BATHROOM TONGS OR BRUSH. The tongs are more 

sanitary and, used with paper clean the toilet 
bowl. A long handled brush is necessary if 
tongs are not used. 

Brush 65 

Tongs 75 


i. SILVERCLEAN PAN cleans flat ware and small Price 

shaped pieces in shorter time $ i.ooandup 



brass, another for nickel. Use instead of pastes 
and powders. Always wear gloves when using 
them 25 each 

3. POLISHING MITT for use on stoves and other dirty 

work. Shaped to the hand, and white wool on 

one side 25 

ACCESSORIES Approximate 



2. BROOM-HOLDERS small devices which permit han- 

dles to be easily kept off the floor 10 each 

3. SHAPED BROOM COVER OF FELT for slipping on 

corn broom in place of string mop 25 

4. PAINT BRUSHES of several sizes for getting into 

stair corners, brushing wicker, etc 15 and up 

5. PUTTY KNIFE This triangular tool is helpful in 

cleaning baseboards, angles, and for general 
scraping 25 

6. GALVANIZED IRON STRIP, 6x3 inches. If this is held 

flush with baseboard or window trim it will 
prevent paper from being soiled while wood- 
work is cleaned 05 

7. POCKET BAG for string, gloves, etc 

8. WATERPROOF APRON, for doing heavy or unpleas- 

ant cleaning, or washing dishes 50 

9. RUBBISH BURNER of wire 75 


LINOLEUM Wash with tepid water and naphtha suds; rinse with 
clear tepid water and dry thoroughly. Avoid water seeping under 
edges, which causes rotting. Do not use brush, but soft cloth. It 
can be successfully waxed, which preserves it and makes it easier 
to care for. 

MATTING Sweep with hair broom; vacuum cleaner is particularly 
good on matting; to cleanse thoroughly, wipe with cloth wrung 
out of strong warm salt solution (one-half cup salt to one gallon). 
There is a matting made of woven paper which looks identical, but 
wears better, as it does not split. 


TILE OR BRICK Use scouring powder and hot water. Avoid 
sloshing, and do only a small section at a time; successively scrub, 
rinse and dry small sections. 

ENAMELED WOOD Woolen cloth wrung out of ivory soap suds. 
Wipe with clean, damp cloth. Do only a small section at a time. 
Use no scouring powder which will remove the finish, but whiting 
paste if very soiled. Polishing with dry flannel restores the high 

WAXED WOOD Sweep with hair broom. Mop with dry mop or 
bagbroom covered with flannel. Do not oil or wash with water; 
use only mop moistened with turpentine, then clean dry mop to 
polish. Wax small spots as they appear, and polish with weighted 
brush about once a month. The well waxed floor is, of all, the 
easiest to keep clean and in repair. 

VARNISHED WOOD Sweep with hair broom; use dry or oil mop 
daily. Never use water if possible, as this removes varnish and 
coarsens wood. Repair small worn places before they wear entirely 
through; if a varnished floor is waxed it stands wear better and is 
easier to care for. Light stains show dust less than dark ones. 
Be sure no excess oil is left on floor to soil rug edges. Varnished 
wood is hard to care for, shows heel marks and "wears through" 
quickly unless care is taken. 

SHELLACKED WOOD Use hair broom and string mop without oil. 
Never use water. In beginning, use equal portions of white shellac 
and grain alcohol applied with a brush. Shellac gives .a hard 
finish temporarily, but must be renewed frequently. Never use 
shellac on linoleum. 

OILED WOOD Use hairbrush and dry or oil mop. This finish 
looks well, but shows footsteps readily. It should not be wiped 
with water, but reoiled with good boiled linseed oil every three 
months or so, being sure to "rub out" the excess oil. 

PAINTED WOOD Use hair broom and string mop ; wipe with moist- 
ened flannel cloth, but never scrub or slosh with water. Shellacked 
paint is good in inexpensive bedrooms where there is little wear, but 
not where there is much treading, as the paint wears off in ugly 

PAINTED PLASTER As for enameled wood. 

BURLAP OR FABRIC WALLS Use stiff small whiskbroom or vacu- 
um cleaner tool 


CORK CARPET OR FLOOR It should first be oiled when laid; then 
use hair broom and oil mop; water scours it but spoils the soft 
coloring. Not suited for kitchen or pantry, as it is too porous 
and absorbs grease readily. 

COMPOSITION FLOORS As tile; only, being without cracks, coarse 
brush can be used. 

An excellent polish for all wood except light maple or 
mahogany is : 

Yz benzine 
Yz crude oil 

Mix thoroughly, and use on cloth or mop to both clean 
and polish. It costs about 30 cents a gallon. 

Briefly, avoid water on all wood ; use damp cloth but not 
sloppy; use cloth or soft string mop, but not brush. 

From the point of view of care, only, and not upkeep, 
floors may be graded in the following order : 

1. Waxed. 

2. Stained and oiled. 

3. Varnish or shellac. 

4. Painted. 

5. Linoleum or tile. 


1. Soaps strong for coarse work bare boards, cement walks, etc.; 
mild for fine woodwork, china, glass, etc. 

2. BON AMI powdered and brick, for porcelain, windows, tile, etc. 

3. ELECTRO-SILICON for cleaning silver. 

4. BARSUM'S PUTZ POLISH brass polish, aluminum. 

5. BRILLO and steel wool aluminum. 

6. LIQUID VENEER or other good furniture polish. 

7. Old English Floor wax for floors and fine woodwork. 

8. Washing soda for cleaning drains, traps, toilets, etc. 

9. C-N Disinfectant, or Platt's Chlorides for disinfecting bath- 



10. Bathbrick for scouring knives and other steelware. 

11. Kerosene for outdoor disinfectant, pouring down drains and 
cleaning coarse woodwork. 

12. Parson's ammonia for washing windows, linoleum, etc. 

13. Borax for softening water, for washing glassware, etc. 

14. Whiting for cleaning enameled paint and nickelware. 

15. Impregnated metal cloth for polishing nickelware. 

16. French chalk for cleansing spots in fabrics blotting paper. 

17. Linseed oil for wiping woodwork and polishing cast-iron 
ranges, etc. Burn rags used with linseed oil; danger from fire 
spontaneous combustion. 

18. "Sapolin" in aluminum, gold, black, etc., for finishing stoves 
and radiators. 

19. "Porcela" for bathtubs and porcelain. 



Wall surfaces for the kitchen have been already discussed 
in Part I. Without doubt painted walls are the easiest to 
care for, and retreat, as well as being the most sanitary. 
A painted wall may be treated with a thin coat of starch 
paste at the time of painting ; this may be washed off when 
soiled, taking the dirt with it, and a new coat applied, which 
is as easy to do as scrubbing the paint. Paper is the surface 
to show the greatest marring, as well as proving fairly un- 
sanitary. Grease spots in paper can be removed by holding 
over the spot a clean white blotter, and holding a hot iron 
over this, which will draw the grease into the paper. Water- 
color paints and a fine brush can be used to "tint" mars and 
small abrasions. 


One of the most satisfactory wall surfaces is a material 
called "lincrusta," which comes in definite sized sections, and 
resembles a thin plasterlike material on cardboard. This 
material comes in different patterns, imitating wood and 
burlap, and can be either painted or stained after it is nailed 
to the wall. It can then be scrubbed, if necessary, and as 
it is practically part of the wall, it is most durable and 
sanitary. It can be applied before the "smooth finish" coat 
of plaster, in a new house, thus saving expense. In homes 
with children, especially, lincrusta proves the best wall coat- 
ing, as it is practically lifelong in wear and upkeep. 

Various kinds of "beaver board" also make more easy- 
to-care for wall surfaces, as they are sanitary, and need 
renewing far less often than paper, paint, kalsomine. Bur- 
lap and fabric coverings, although they may look well, 
shrink and "bubble" if not very well put on, and are quite 
unsanitary and difficult to clean. 




1. (a) What cleaning tools have you at present ? (b) Do 

you think it advisable to add any and what? (c) 
Where do you keep these tools ? 

2. If possible, report time studies on cleaning rooms sepa- 

rately and again without "change of shift." 

3. Write out "Standard Practice" for your most unsatis- 

factory or difficult cleaning task. 

4. What is your experience (if any) with vacuum clean- 


5. From experience, do you agree with the text in the use 

of long-handled tools ? 



Contains a small refrigerator, cabinet, 3-burner gas stove, steel table 
(flreless underneath), combined laundry tray-sink and shelves for supplies, 
pots and utensils for a family of four on the "light housekeeping" plan. 




MANY women admit that while cleaning takes a great 
deal of time, still it is one of the tasks of the home 
which can be glossed over, or quite neglected in 
extreme need. But the three-meals-a-day problem seems the 
one from which there is no escape. We can leave the windows 
unwashed if we don't get time or are too tired, but no 
matter what the circumstances or how the homemaker feels, 
the family must eat and so food must be prepared regularly. 
It is estimated that 70 per cent of the total time spent on all 
housework is devoted to meal planning, cooking, serving, and 
dishwashing, whether the family be rich or poor. 

Is it necessary that this large proportion of time and effort 
be spent by the homemaker in order that her family is prop- 
erly nourished? Even though three meals a day must be 
prepared every day in the year, it is possible to reduce the 
work involved : 

ist: By studying and understanding food values. 
2nd: By following cooking methods that are well- 
3rd : By using fuels and utensils that cut costs and 

save effort and time. 

The question must be asked first, "Why do we cook?" 
And the answer is naturally, "To nourish the body and 


maintain it at the highest point of health and power for 
work." But again and again it is found in many homes that 
a great amount of cooking is done that does not fulfil this 
aim. Cooking is all too frequently unthinkingly done to 
feed the family, without planning to nourish it. For instance, 
an individual might eat two or three large dumplings which 
would undoubtedly "feed" him, but which would not nourish 
him properly. Cooking is also done according to the whims 
or tastes of the members of the family, who do not under- 
stand what their body requires, but who desire food that 
merely gratifies the palate. It is therefore the all-important 
duty of the homemaker herself to make a study of food 
values and to supply her table with rightly-chosen foods, 
cooked intelligently. 

The first step toward simpler, easier cooking is this true 
understanding of food values. The practice of cooking alone 
never gives this, and someone may "cook for twenty years" 
and still not be preparing food according to the real needs of 
the family. While the knowledge of foods is a study in 
itself (which can only be touched on here), nevertheless 
there are certain principles of nutrition on which the easier 
and better preparation of meals depend. 


(1) PROTEIN: Lean of meat and fish, white of egg; abundant in 

cheese, beans, peas and other legumes; in milk and many 
grains like oatmeal, wheat and barley and in nuts. 
(Protein is the only nutrient which can furnish the mate- 
rial to replace old or grow new tissue.) 

(2) CARBOHYDRATES : Starch, sugar, etc. Starch found in all cereals, 

flours, meals and their products; in many vegetables 
potatoes, beans, peas, etc.; in nuts and some fruits. Sugar 
as cane sugar, beet sugar, and present in most fruits, some 
vegetables and in milk. 

(Carbohydrates furnish "fuel" for heat and (muscular 
. energy to the body They are the quick fuels.) 


(3) FATS: Fats of meat and fish, butter, cream, lard, suet; also 

vegetable oils like olive, cottonseed, nut oils and shortening 
preparations made from them. 

(Fats furnish over twice the "fuel" for heat and energy as 
same weight of carbohydrate or protein. Excess of food 
supply is stored in the body as fat.) 

(4) MINERAL SALTS: Salts found in all vegetables and fruits and 

in the outer coats especially of various cereals; also in 
milk and eggs. 

(Mineral salts form the greater part of the bony structure 
and are a very small, though necessary, part of every tissue 
in the body; they are necessary for the digestive secre- 
tions and for the blood.) 

BULK OR WASTE PRODUCTS : Tissues of many vegetables and fruits 
which do not contain nutrients, but which serve to give 
"bulk" to the meal, and act as "brooms" to the system, 
stimulating the intestinal and muscular walls, as the cellu- 
lose in cabbage, celery, beets, carrots, spinach, etc. 

WATER: This forms a large portion of all foods and body tissues and 
is necessary in dissolving the food, cariying away waste 
products, and in regulating the temperature of the body 
through the blood. 

Every food contains one or more (sometimes all) of these 
"nutrients." For the average person the best meal is that 
which is planned after what is called the "balanced ration." 


A "balanced" meal is one in which the various food prin- 
ciples are combined in a proper proportion. The "balanced" 
meal must contain some protein, some carbohydrate, some 
fat, some mineral salts, some water and some bulk. This 
combination or "balance" should be present in all meals, 
both for the needs of the body and for good digestion. In 
other words, it will not do to eat nearly all starch at one 
meal, nearly all protein at the next. A meal should not 
contain roast beef, beans and a rich custard dessert, or there 
will be too much protein ; a meal should not contain corn on 


cob, mashed potatoes and rice pudding, because this would 
give too much starch, and a meal should not consist of 
pork, fried potatoes and rich pudding with butter sauce, 
for it would contain too much fat.* 

A glance at these two sets of meals will show which is 
"balanced" and which is not : 













(Too much starch) 




(Too much fat) 




(Too much protein) 

* Bulletins of the School, "Food Values," "Freehand Cooking," "Five 
Cent Meals" (10 cents each) are a help in this connection. The book 
"Lessons in Cooking, Through Preparation of Meals" gives 267 well bal- 
anced menus, with recipes and directions for preparing each of the meals, 
500 pp. illustrated. Price $2.00, postpaid, on approval. 



Not only does the "balanced" meal furnish the proper 
proportion of nourishment, but it lessens the cost of the 
menus. The homemaker who understands the principles of 
the balanced meal will not, for instance, have an expensive 
egg dessert when the first course is a substantial meat dish, 
or vice versa. She will not have ham and eggs and cheese 
and a floating island dessert. She will know that many of 
the so-called cheaper cuts around the flank, etc., furnish as 
much nutriment as porterhouse or expensive loin. She will 
know that a simple meal of cream soup, bread and butter 
with a custard furnishes as much nourishment as an elab- 
orate luncheon of sardines, sliced meat, potatoes, canned 
peaches and cake. In other words, the balanced meal makes 
for real economy. 


But the balanced meal truly makes for efficiency in cook- 
ing, because the housekeeper who follows this plan does not 
need to spend the time in preparing the balanced meal that 
she does usually on an elaborate meal. When she knows 
that the simple balanced meal, well cooked and served will 
satisfy the actual needs of her family, she need not spend 
hours over unnecessary pot-watching, making complicated 
desserts and taking several hours to prepare the food for 
one meal. Most of the 70 per cent of her time spent in 
cooking results because the housewife attempts to serve too 
many kinds of food or too many courses at the same meal. 
Cooking can be simplified largely by having a simpler 


Another important thing to remember in planning meal? 
is, to consider the taste and appetite as well as the nutritive 


values. Even the best dinner, arranged on the most nourish- 
ing plan, would not necessarily be appetizing if certain rules 
are not observed. Every meal should have contrast sweet 
with sour, light with heavy, crisp with soft, strong with deli- 
cate. The ideal meal is that in which one passes from one 
pleasurable taste to another. Every dish in the menu must 
be considered with relation to every other from the point of 
view of taste alone. 

It is not only what we eat, but the pleasure we enjoy when 
we eat that makes meals satisfactory. Science has proved 
that the appetizing meal is more likely to be well digested. 
Therefore the housewife's planning must include the appear- 
ance and daintiness of each dish, and its contrast with the 
others. We do not want so many courses as in the so-called 
''formal" meal, but we do need to follow the dexterous nan- 
ner in which each course opposes the other, and, as it were, 
"plays up" the succeeding one. 

Two creamed foods should not generally be served at the 
same meal or there will be too much "sloppy" foods. Dry 
meats should be served with creamed or scalloped potatoes, 
dry potatoes with gravy. A meal should not contain two 
strong flavored foods like cheese, onions, cabbage, cauli- 
flower, turnips. Rich puddings should have acid sauces, 
light cakes go with rich desserts, and rich cakes with plain 
and fruit desserts. Not even a good appetite can enjoy 
monotonous unrelieved foods. 


Nothing wastes time more or is more inefficient than to 
let the choosing of a meal go until an hour or two hours 
before it is to be served. If left in this way until the last 
moment it is quite sure not to be a "balanced" meal, but one 
hastily put together, of anything that happens to be in the 
house or that can be obtained quickly. 


Planning meals ahead has definite advantages : 

(1) It permits economical marketing in advance, and 

purchase in larger quantities. 

(2) It cuts down the time necessaiy in marketing, as 

instead of shopping every day for a small amount, 
marketing is done once or twice a week. 

(3) It permits cooking for more than one meal at a 

time and saves in the use and washing of kitchen 

(4) It permits food preparation many hours in advance 

of the actual meal. 

If meals are left until the last moment it is likely that 
someone may have to "run to the store," or telephone or pay 
the highest price for some article which is to be included in 
the meal. The most extravagant way of purchasing house- 
hold supplies is to purchase in small quantities "by the bag" 
or by the box from day to day. On the other hand, by plan- 
ning meals in advance, the materials for these meals can be 
carefully chosen, a list made, and bought in quantity. Sta- 
ples should be estimated and bought in quantity, and by 
weight. Each time an article is divided in a smaller and 
smaller unit, as a pound, a quart, it costs more proportion- 
ately than an equal amount bought by the bushel, the case or 
the ten pounds. 

It has been estimated that potatoes which cost $1.00 per 
bushel for a 6o-pound bushel, or at the rate of 25 cents a 
peck, cost the consumer as high as 45 cents a peck when 
sold by small bags or 10 or 15 cents' worth at a time. Rice, 
cornmeal, sugar and other bought groceries should be pur- 
chased in 3, 5 or lo-pound quantity. The menus can be so 
planned as to get the greatest advantage from a plan of 
wholesale buying. 



In all institutions and hotels meals are planned consid- 
erably in advance and a "purchasing sheet" made out for 
these articles. This makes for economy because by seeing 
what several meals are to consist of at one time the house- 
keeper can apportion the materials to the best advantage and 
arrange the meals so that meats, vegetables, etc., are planned 
for two or more servings. 

A purchasing sheet can be made out for one week or for 
two weeks, and should include every item necessary for the 
satisfactory completion of all the meals in a given time. 

This does not mean that every item for the whole week 
must be bought at one time, but that it be known in advance 
what every item is which is needed to develop these meals 
satisfactorily. Thus the "purchasing sheet" fulfils the sec- 
ond benefit of meals planned in advance; it prevents the 
possibility of being "out" of any product needed in the 
preparation of the meals. 

To make a purchasing sheet, proceed as follows : 
First write down the menus desired. Then estimate the 
number of eggs, the pounds of tea and coffee, the amount 
of potatoes, meats and vegetables, etc., needed. For in- 
stance, in the meals following, by looking at the desserts and 
other dishes which call for eggs, we see that 30 eggs are 
needed. By measuring a pound of coffee it is found that it 
contains 50 tablespoons. On this basis, as 5 tablespoon fuls 
are used each morning, i pound of coffee will suffice for 10 
mornings. Beets are used twice and 2 cans of tomatoes, 
and it is always noted what foods are in season before 
making up the menus in the first place. Suppose about 8 
potatoes are used every meal, and that 8 potatoes weigh 
approximately 2 Ibs. By having potatoes at 9 meals, 18 Ibs. 
will be needed for this one week. Since it is further known 


that a bushel of potatoes weigh 60 Ibs. a further estimate 
shows that a little over % bushel is needed each week. In a 
similar way every item, number of pounds, bunches or dozen, 
can be worked out to prepare the menus for any given 

The menus following and their corresponding purchasing 
sheet are for simple, average family meals, particularly sea- 
sonable for the cold winter months. They are arranged to 
give "balanced combination of foods," and yield a large 
amount of heat and energy so that the body can withstand 
the cold. That is why the menus contain much fat and 
starchy foods, hot cakes, baked or casserole dishes. But it 
will be noted no starchy vegetable is used at the same meal 
with a starchy pudding ; a heavy meat is relieved by an acid 
salad or a fruit dessert ; poor combinations like rice, potatoes 
and macaroni are avoided, and each meal has a proper "bal- 
ance" of protein, starch, fat and bulk. 



































Breakfast ORANGES 






























peck of apples i 

pound each of Irish oat- 5 

meal, cracked wheat and 2 

other cereal i 
pints of maple syrup 

pound of coffee y 2 

pounds of forequarter of l /$ 

lamb J4 

pecks of potatoes l /2 

medium sized rutabagas i 

small can of pimentos i 

box of gelatin i 

pounds of smoked finnan i 

haddie 4 

pound box of marshmal- i 

lows y> 

pounds of dried apricots y* 

dozen eggs I 
quart jar, or a large can of 2 

beets 2 

pound box of raisins 2 

pounds of sausages i 

pound of rice ^2 

bananas i*/2 

pound of spaghetti J4 
pound sharp American y% 

cheese 6 
bunches of celery 

oranges 2 l / 2 

bunch of carrots 2 

large cabbage 3 
box of grated cocoanut 

pound of dried prunes 

pounds of veal 

cans of tomatoes 

small can of pineapple (or 

the fresh fruit) 
pound of dried beef 
box of cocoa 
cake of chocolate 
pound of flageolets 
pint of cranberries 
quart of sweet potatoes 
quart of oysters 
box of oyster crackers 
pounds of halibut 
quart of parsnips 
pound of bacon 
pound of tapioca 
box of lemon snaps 
pounds of lentils 
cupfuls of mincemeat 
quarts of milk daily 
large loaf of bread daily 
small bag of salt 
pounds of lard 
pound of tea 
box of corn starch 
pounds of flour for rolls. 

cakes, gravies, etc. 
pounds of butter 
very small heads of lettuce 


Looking at the menus it will be seen that the meals were 
planned so that : Tomato from Dinner No. 4 made soup for 
Luncheon No. 5 ; potatoes from Dinner No. I made potatoes 
for Dinner No. 2 ; veal from Dinner No. 4 made potpie for 
Dinner No. 5 ; fish from Dinner No. 6 made creamed fish 
for Luncheon No. 7; pudding from Dinner No. 3 made 
Luncheon No. 4 ; the forequarter of lamb made four meals 
(explained below) ; cabbage for slaw No. 3 made creamed 
cabbage for Dinner No. 4; egg^yolks from dessert No. 4 
made Breakfast No. 5 ; left-over lamb from dinners Nos. I 
and 3 made croquettes for Luncheon No. 4. 

The fifth strong argument in favor of scheduled meals is 
that it saves endless time and nervous energy. Under the 
old way one had to stop and think about "What shall I 
have ?" at least every other day. Poor planning means that 
a suddenly needed article is "out," and the whole meal has 
to be replanned to fit this condition. Poor planning also 
makes for "hit-and-miss" results, and it is impossible to 
estimate how certain quantities will last. With "scheduled 
meals" there is no such fussing and readjusting. 

Such menus and purchase sheets should be preserved for 
reference. With changes and improvements they can be 
used many times, thus saving time in planning. 


Still another advantage of planning meals ahead in this 
way is that it permits a more accurate "time schedule" to 
be made and followed, as outlined in Chapter II, Plans and 
Methods of Daily Household. Indeed, it is impossible to 
make a practical schedule unless the meals are planned in 
advance and the cooking fitted in with the other household 

It is also advisable, especially for beginners, to put down 
the order of preparation and time at which the cooking of 


each dish must commence, so that the whole meal may be 
done and ready to serve on schedule time. 


It is difficult to say just where to draw the line between 
the saving made by careful planning and by careful market- 
ing, as they dovetail so much. Careful marketing depends 
on careful planning, and on the other hand successful, effi- 
cient marketing is based on exact planning. 

A reference to the menu shows that dinner on Sunday 
consists of breast of lamb, while the second dinner is larnb 
chops ; Dinner No. 3 is of Irish stew ; and Luncheon No. 4 
is croquettes. All these meals are obtained from the same 
piece the forequarter of lamb or mutton, bought at one 
time in one section. As a whole, this forequarter, when it 
weighs 10 pounds would cost $1.50 for the piece; but if 
bought in sections it would cost considerably more, as the 
following table, based on pre-war prices, shows : 


10 Ib. forequarter of mutton, at 150 per pound $1-5 

If divided : 4 Ibs. shoulder roast @ i8c $0.72 

23/4 Ibs. neck for stew @ 130 36 

3^4 Ibs. rib chops @ 2OC 65 


tor 23 cents saved by buying the entire forequarter. 

10 Ib. hindquarter of mutton @ i8c $1.80 

If divided : 7 Ibs. of roast @ 22c $1-54 

3 Ibs. of chops @ 28c 84 


or 58 cents saved. 

JO Ib. ^shoulder of veal @ i8c $1.80 

If divided: 7 Ibs. roast @ 22C $1-54 

3 Ibs. of stew @ i8c 54 


or 28 cents saved. 


10 Ibs. of rib roast @ 220 $2.20 

If divided: 8 Ibs. of short rib for roast @ 260 $2.08 
2 Ibs. of long ribs for soup @ i8c .36 


or 24 cents saved. 

10 Ib. loin of pork @ 200 $2.00 

If divided: 5 Ibs. of roast @ 2oc . .. $1.00 

. 5 Ibs. of loin chops @ 22c 


or 10 cents saved. 

It would seem from these figures that there is a decided 
saving in buying certain meats in quantity enough for two 
meals or more. This is possible when the family is large 
enough and there is adequate storage facility to keep the 
uncooked portion until needed. However, this saving is 
made only on the better meats on "prime" cuts. There is 
no saving in buying quantities of chuck, brisket or other of 
the cheaper cuts, because no matter how much is bought 
there is no more to be obtained at a less price than the small 
quantity price. 

The saving is on large "prime" sections which, when cut 
up, make chops, roasts and choice pieces, and on which there 
is also more waste in handling for the butcher. If he can 
sell a whole loin at once he is willing to sell it for four cents 
a pound less in order to save the waste there is in it to him 
when he divides it up into separate sections of chops, 
shoulder, etc. 

Another reading of these menus will show that this 
several-meal-buying idea was followed out with the vegeta- 
bles and fruit. Enough beets were bought to do two meals, 
a hot vegetable and a cold relish ; apples and oranges were 
bought with the double meals they would serve in mind; 
cabbage was planned for two meals ; enough fish was bought 
at once to do for the warm dinner and the creamed fish for 
luncheon ; the same was planned for the veal and the mock 
chicken pie it made the following day. This idea of over- 
lapping the same material for two or more meals and mar- 


keting with this in view results in a big money-saving, 
because it forces the housewife to buy more closely and less 
lavishly and less in the hit-or-miss way which is always more 



Baking powder 

Flavoring Extract.. 

Canned soups 

Canned vegetables . . 

Canned fruits 

Olive oil 

Whole wheat flour. . 
Rice, beans, lentils, 

tapioca, etc 

Packaged jellies, co- 

coanut, etc 



Dried fruits 

Laundry soap 

Toilet paper 

Laundry starch 

White soap 



ost by the Pound Cost in Qua 

i pound $0.30 5 pounds 

2 pound 

.22 2J/2 pounds 

2 oz. bot. 

.25 ^2 pint 


.10 12 cans 


.15 24 cans 


.20 12 cans 

small bottle 

.46 i quart 


.45 tf bbl., 98 11 


.10 5 pounds 


.10 12 packages 


.60 5 pounds 


.05 12 packages 


.15 2 pounds 


.05 10 bars 


.09 6 rolls 


.05 10 pounds 


.05 10 cakes 


.40 i bushel 

i pound 

.14 5-pound pai 

tity Saving 

$1.25 $0.25 






.42 .08 

1. 12 





Many women will say, "Oh, I always use up left-overs 
in salads or in various souffle or scalloped forms." But there 
is a difference between the "left-over" and the deliberate 
planning to prepare sufficient of the same material to last 
two meals, with only one "long" cooking. For example, in 
Dinner No. I creamed potatoes are used. Now, without the 
several-meal idea in mind, perhaps a generous quantity suf- 
ficient for one meal would have been prepared, and if some 
happened to be left over, it would have been fried or pre- 
pared in any accidental way that struck the fancy. But by 
planning ahead, enough was prepared at one long cooking 


to reheat with a short cooking the second day, part of 
creamed potatoes on Dinner I were scalloped for Dinner 2. 

This plan makes a decided saving in fuel, for it takes 
from 25 to 40 minutes to cook any potatoes or other vegeta- 
bles for one meal. But it takes only 10 or 15 minutes to 
reheat or scallop the potatoes which is called "short" 
cooking. In other words, by planning meals ahead in this 
way, instead of there being two "long" cookings, there is 
necessary only one "long" cooking and one "short" cooking. 
This is illustrated in the cooking of potatoes for Dinner 
No. I and Dinner No. 4; croquettes of Luncheon No. 4; 
veal of Dinner No. 4, fish of Dinner No. 6 and at various 
other times. This method shortens the time of preparing 
and saves money in fuel. In many a home potatoes are 
boiled half an hour for every dinner, and a hot vegetable 
for every meal for 40 minutes, and never a thought is given 
to the many times this second "long" cooking could be 

In the cocoanut pudding, Dinner No. 3, two distinct 
dishes were made at one time, one in a mold for dinner and 
the other in individual cups for luncheon, which, served 
with chocolate sauce, made a distinct dessert. In Dinner 
No. 6 all the halibut is cooked until done, then the second 
portion is removed for the next day's luncheon before the 
tomato -is added to the first part. In any case where there 
was a first "long" cooking of both potato and vegetable, they 
were both cooked on the same burner in a steamer. 

In summer it is easy to use in a salad vegetables which 
have had the first "long" cooking, because string beans, car- 
rots, beets, etc., when cooked, make just as attractive vegeta- 
bles served cold with French dressing as they did hot the 
first day. In winter, potato, cheese and egg "planned-overs" 
can be scalloped quickly or served in a cream sauce. Dinner 
No. 7 is a "baked" dinner, and dinner No. 3 a boiled one 


all foods being baked in one case, and boiled in the other. 
The greatest waste in fuel occurs when frying, boiling, and 
baking are all attempted at the same meal. 

Aside from using such helps as fireless cookers, steamers 
and portable ovens, the housewife can cut down fuel expense 
by planning left-overs or extensively developing this idea of 
giving the "long" cooking only once to either meat, vegeta- 
bles or fruit. There are women who claim that left-overs 
can never % be more than what their name implies, but in 
France the use of small pieces is an art, and many of the 
most successful dishes are made from what American house- 
wives would call worthless. The sauce, and the daintiness 
with which they are served are the secrets of making left- 
overs successful, whether they are meat, vegetable or cheese. 

A novel way of utilizing left-overs is to use them with 
canned soups, like tomato, mulligatawney, oxtail, tomato and 
vegetable, costing 13 cents a can or 60 cents a half dozen 
cans. The contents are diluted, then thickened to make a 
pleasant sauce, and the beef, mutton, fish, etc., are heated 
in the sauce and then served either at once on toast or scal- 
loped for a few moments in the oven and dotted with bread- 
crumbs. The smallest left-overs can be made into appetizing 
dishes in this way. 

Mulligatawney soup as sauce for portions of cold meat, beef, mut- 
ton, pork or veal. Makes a delicious curry, shepherd's pie, baked 
peppers and rice, collops on toast, flank steak, etc. 

Oxtail soup as sauce to spaghetti, rice, peppers, left-over meat of 
any kind, hard-boiled eggs, etc., chopped Hamburger, chopped tail 
of steak, pickings from any meat, made into croquettes or force- 

Vegetable soup as sauce for left-over soup meat, brisket, roast 
or pork, in individual casseroles, etc. 

Mutton and beef broth as stock, the basis of croquettes and many 
other made dishes, in every case where stock is generally used, 
which causes the great expense of the "long" cooking and strain- 
ing of stock. 

Tomato soup, very diluted, as sauce to portions of fish, cheese 
and canned salmon to make mock lobster, rabbit, Venetian eggs, etc. 



When any cooking is analyzed it is found that it consists 
of the following three steps: 

(1) Grouping food materials and utensils. 

(2) Actual preparation, or work. 

(3) "Clearing up." 

It is also found that while the time spent in actual prep- 
aration (2) is nearly constant, the time spent in grouping 
(i) and clearing away (3) varies considerably. The first 
help, then, to efficient cooking is efficient grouping of utensils 
and materials, as described in Chapter I. Only when tools 
are grouped, when materials are conveniently arranged and 
the kitchen step-saving, can cooking be done easily and 

Much time that is often wasted in clearing up (3) can be 
lessened by a more dexterous, neat manner of working. 
For example, if a recipe calls for both. dry and liquid mate- 
rials, the dry materials can be measured first, in this way 
using only one container or cup, whereas if it is the liquid 
that is measured first, a clean one would be needed to meas- 
ure the dry. The "wipe as you go" adage is a good one; 
but another saving plan is to cook at the same time dishes 
needing similar tools. 

For instance, a Spanish cream, a prune whip and mayon- 
naise are types of dishes that "overlap" and use the same 
kinds of utensils, bowls, beater, etc. If made at the same 
time, there is a saving in the number of utensils and also the 
time of preparation over these same dishes if made at dif- 
ferent times with separate groupings and handlings. Here 
is where planning ahead will permit a saving which would 
be impossible with haphazard meals. 




Spanish cream 4 min. 7 min. 5 min. 6 

Boiled salad dressing 3 min. 8 min. 5 min. 8 

Cake 4 min. 9 min. 6 min. n 

Prune whip 3 min. 5 min. 4 min. 5 

14 min. 29 min. 20 min. 30 




Spanish cream 4 min. 7 min. 6 

Boiled salad dressing i min. 8 min. 3 

Cake i min. 9 min. 4 

Prune whip I min. 5 min. i 

7 min. 29 min. 9 min. 14 


The points brought out are that the amount of time spent 
in the actual preparation is about the same whether the tasks 
are done together or separately. But if the tasks are done 
together, the time spent in grouping materials is cut down 
about one-half, from 14 to 7 minutes. Also, the time spent 
in cleaning up is cut down over half, from 20 to 9 minutes. 
The number of utensils saved is appreciable, and in general 
the amount of time saved is greater the more similar the 
kinds of materials and tools used in each case. That is, 
briefly, it takes much more time to clear up after separate 
tasks or cooking than if several dishes are made successively 
and only one "clearing up" performed. Thus there is a 
distinct saving by planning to cook dishes using similar 
utensils and material at one time. 


Probably the usual method of preparing three meals a 
day is first to cook breakfast, then proceed to other cleaning 


and housework, come back to the kitchen for lunch prepara- 
tion, then spend several hours for preparing the evening 
meal. No wonder so many women feel that most of their 
life is spent in the kitchen ! The planning of meals in ad- 
vance has this chief value that it permits cooking and prep- 
aration in advance. Many women now follow this plan 
either consciously or by instinct, and practical tests prove 
that it is the one thing to make cooking less complicated. 

If the breakfast dishes are washed in the morning this 
time will give a half hour or more in which to start lunch 
preparation, either preparing a cup custard, starting a pot of 
soup, or doing some other "advance" cooking so that the 
actual time needed to serve lunch will be considerably les- 
sened. Similarly, while washing the lunch dishes and being 
present in the kitchen for an hour or more after lunch is just 
the occasion to give the dinner an "advance" start. Many 
cases were noted in which women required an hour and a 
half previous to supper for its preparation of vegetables, 
meat, etc. Now, a great part of this time might be saved 
by giving a preliminary cooking to some of the supper foods 
while the worker must stay in the kitchen to clear up after 
lunch. The writer's personal plan is to prepare vegetables, 
arrange meat in pan, clean salad, and if possible cook the 
dessert in the hour following lunch. She has then a house 
dress on and can wash up the tools and utensils used for 
dinner preparation along with the lunch dishes. This makes 
it necessary for the worker to spend only a minimum of 
time in the kitchen at night when she is dressed for the 
evening, and greatly lessens the number of pieces to be 
washed at the evening meal. This is the one plan which 
above all permits a longer, more definite "off time" in the 
afternoon for calling, club meetings or rest. 

That this "advance" cooking method is worth while is 
shown by the following letter : 


"On receipt of your letter I sat down and decided to put 
your good advice into practice. Since then my husband's 
two brothers have come to me, I have had to take three more 
rooms, and yet despite this additional care I get through my 
work more easily than ever. I rest for an hour every day 
and take Sonny for a walk all due to having followed your 
rule. The purchasing sheet is a fine scheme and planning 
a week's menu is a great nerve-saver. I do as much cooking 

Dish warming closet below heated by electricity. 

as possible in one period. I am writing now Monday morn- 
ing, 12 :io. I have my potatoes peeled in a pan of water, 
my carrots are scraped, I have an apple pie baked for to- 
night's dinner, a loaf of sponge cake and a chocolate char- 
lotte for tomorrow's six o'clock dinner. Today I have no 
extra work, so I cook all I can for tomorrow. My house is 
in order and I have a whole rainy afternoon in which to 
sew." MARY F. S. 

Mrs. S. said in her letter that at 12 o'clock one day she 


had cake and dessert ready for the following day's night 
meal. She had followed out another practical plan that of 
cooking for several meals at once. It is only custom which 
keeps alive the idea that every single article of food needed 
for a meal must be cooked just previous to that meal. Many 
desserts, stewed fruits, can all be prepared hours in advance. 
Vegetables too can be cooked long before they are needed 
without losing flavor, if care is taken. For instance, if 
creamed carrots, celery or cauliflower is to be used at night 
it could better be given its "long" cooking during the after 
lunch hour while the worker is watching the stove at the 
same time she is washing dishes. Then at night there would 
be needed only a quarter of an hour's "short" cooking stand- 
ing over the stove to make the cream sauce and heat the 
vegetable in it. 

Even many roasts and similar pieces can be given a two- 
thirds cooking during the early part of the day. A turkey 
is improved in taste if cooked once and given its final cook- 
ing and heating just before serving. A leg of lamb for a 
night meal may be given an hour-and-a-half cooking in the 
forenoon when both cook and kitchen are in working order 
and need only a half hour's heating previous to its final 
serving. The practice of cooking for several meals at one 
time proves scientifically to save the constant recurring, 
trotting to and staying in the kitchen, and standing over the 
stove at every separate meal. 

Our grandmothers unconsciously frequently followed this 
plan when they had a "baking day" or a "roasting day" in 
which six or a dozen dishes were cooked which were to be 
distributed over two or three days. The continental people 
follow much the same plan, especially with their large ovens 
which are heated and cook a very large quantity, then served 
in smaller containers at separate meals. This running into 
the kitchen to give an hour's boiling to every vegetable, and 


a two-hours' roasting for every separate meal is unnecessary 
and disastrously time-taking. 


Another chief reason for unnecessary time spent over the 
cook-stove is the quite general practice of following two or 
three different cooking methods in the preparation of a 
single meal. A boiled soup, a fried meat, a boiled vegetable 
and a baked dessert is an example of a dinner requiring too 


Fits inside any medium sized utensil, condenses steam and saves fuel. 
Particularly useful with a frying pan. 

many different processes. If one article is to be baked, 
have several dishes baked or an "all baked" dinner. If 
one vegetable and a soup are to be boiled why not instead 
make an all-boiled dinner with meat, vegetables, after the 
New England "boiled dinner" or the many delicious "stews" 
of foreign countries, so that the same method is used? 

To have many cooking methods going at the same time 
makes it more difficult to serve and much more time-taking. 
Again, even if one vegetable is preferred boiled and a roast 
and dessert are cooked in the oven, it is possible to cook 
even that boiled vegetable inside the oven, if space permits. 
With the exception of cabbage and cauliflower, which need 


air to keep them white in cooking, other vegetables may be 
cooked in water in the oven with an increase in flavor. This 
does away with the objection of having too many burners 
going, or having so many pots to watch on top of the stove. 
Fuel is saved as well as time. (See Dinners 3 and 6, pages 
188, 189.) 


Another means of enabling the worker to cook in advance 
is by the use of earthenware or glass casserole dishes. 


They withstand heat, permit foods to be cooked and served in the same 
dish and are easily cleaned. 

Meats, soups and vegetables can in these earthenware dishes 
be cooked slowly or given a preliminary cooking so that only 
a final warming is needed just previous to the meal. The 
newest casseroles are of heavy but beautiful glass which 
stand the long continued heat of any kind of oven. By this 
slow cooking flavors are developed, meats are made tender 
and none of the juices can escape. Another advantage they 
possess is their sanitary superiority over the usual iron pot 
or roasting pan. Last, the casserole permits the food to be 
cooked and served in the same dish, which greatly lessens the 
dishwashing needed by the usual method of cooking in one 
dish and then serving on a table platter or dish. 




In this connection must be mentioned again the fireless and 
the steam cooker, which are the greatest aids in this method 
of "advance preparation" of meals. As is well known, foods 
can be placed in the fireless at night for use the next morn- 


ing, or in the morning for use at night, etc. The steam 
cooker has these advantages it operates over one burner, 
it permits the use of baking dishes which can also be used 
at the table, and foods can be placed in it and cooked hours 
in advance of the time they are actually served. The newest 
gas stove on the market is a combination gas-fireless. It is 
a complete gas stove with an insulated oven which is also 


operated by an automatic attachment. For instance, a roast, 
pot of string beans, apple bread pudding and pot of soup can 
all be placed in this insulated oven at one time. The gas is 
then allowed to burn for a short time, at the end of which 
it turns off automatically and the cooking proceeds on the 
fireless principle. In this stove probably the height of mod- 
ern cooking economy and efficiency is reached. The time 
saved by cooking with such a stove over the usual cooking 
method may amount to three or four hours. (See Chapter 
II, Plans and Methods of Daily Housework, page 89.) 


If there is one method above all others that we, as a nation, 
seem to be addicted to, it is the use of the frying-pan and 

Used on top of stoves. Drippings run into the small pan as fast as formed. 

"fried" foods. An excess of fried foods is most unwhole- 
some, but from our point of view, the frying-pan is, one of 
the greatest labor-makers in the kitchen. Frying, as prac- 
ticed with a very small quantity of grease in the pan, creates 
smoke, odor and adds to kitchen cleaning. Many foods 
ordinarily fried can be prepared otherwise. For instance, 
bacon or ham taste better broiled or baked in the oven over 
a little bacon grid. There is no smoke and far less odor 
and none of the unpleasant sputtering attendant on the 


frying-pan. Similarly, chops and other foods fried can bet- 
ter be laid in a roasting pan and cooked in the oven. 

A new broiler on the market can be used on any stove and 
is more efficient than the usual wire type. It consists of a 
corrugated iron plate with bail handle, which will fit over 
any burner or range opening. Broiling on this grid is far 
more satisfactory than cooking with the usual frying pan. 
All of the baking, casserole, and stewing methods and their 
respective equipment result in more wholesome cookery and 
in less labor for the cook than the frying-pan way. 


No food planning can be economical and efficient which 
is not based upon a knowledge of weights and the various 
amounts needed in any particular family. Many housekeep- 
ers naturally or by practice have learned to judge how far a 
certain amount of food will go. But it is better to supplant 
this haphazard information by tested, accurate figures. For 
instance, how much round steak is needed? How long will 
i pound of coffee last? How many pounds of sugar are 
used a week? More exact knowledge on these and other 
estimates will make for better purchasing and easier cooking. 
For example, there are seven medium-sized meat-balls in 
i*/2 Ibs. There are 50 tablespoonfuls in I Ib. of coffee, and 
possibly y^ Ibs. per week is an average. These facts written 
in the housekeeper's notebook would enable her to judge the 
family's needs and to buy more accurately. 


The general way in cooking is to buy a generous amount 
and use what you wish and if there is any left utilize it for 
the following day in a "left-over." The newer idea is to 
purposely plan for a left-over which will be large enough 
to be of really practical use, as illustrated in the menus which 


we have considered. Thus, mashed potatoes might be made 
for one meal and so few left over that nothing could be 
done with them. Little scraps of meat might be either 
thrown out or merely tolerated. But with the "planned- 
over" method the estimate of what the family will eat at a 
given time is so close that, say, a double portion of mashed 
potatoes is made, one to eat hot and the other purposely 
sufficiently to make potato balls for a second entire meal. 
Instead of a few scraps of meat enough is bought so that 
the second portion will make a thoroughly satisfactory and 
adequate dish. It is not permitted to have only a saucerful 
of a vegetable left, but either none at all or enough for a 
second helping. For instance, twice as much carrots, beets, 
peas, etc., are cooked so that one serving can be hot and the 
other serving re-heated in a different manner or used cold 
as salad. In other words, foods are so gauged in their 
amounts that there is no waste and that the economical 
"planned-over" replaces the frequently wasteful "left-over." 


One of the most common wastes in cooking is to throw 
away the water in which a vegetable has been cooked. All 
vegetables contain and some greatly valuable mineral 
salts which are their chief value as food. But the common 
way of boiling carrots, spinach, etc., in large quantities of 
water and pouring this off merely throws away the valuable 
dissolved salts. The best cooking method for vegetables 
(with the exception of the cabbage tribe, old turnips and 
onions) is to steam in no water, or to boil in a very small 
quantity and then utilize this small amount of liquor in 
serving the vegetable or as a basis for a sauce. 

Frequently fuel is wasted by keeping a pot boiling furi- 
ously. Once it is at a boiling point the temperature cannot 
increase nor the cooking time be lessened, no matter how 



rapidly the watter is bubbling. This is a common mistake, 
especially on a gas stove, as it is not necessary to keep water 
bubbling (212 F.) to 
cook food. Inside a 
double boiler the tem- 
perature is about 
192 F. The correct 
degree of heat for 
stewing is about 106 
F. to 180 F. Cook- 
ing over the "sim- 
merer" burner of a 
gas stove can be done 
using only two or 
three feet of gas an 
hour. Unnecessary 
degrees of heat are 
used in cooking with 
the result of wasted 
fuel, unnecessarily hot 
kitchen and often 
poorly cooked food. 
The following table for baking may be helpful: 


Saves time, matches and ga 
Populus," Price 25 

as. "Round File 



Roast Meats 480 F. 

Fish 425 F. 

Bread 440 F. 

Popovers 480 F. 

Cookies, Spice or Raisin 450 F. 

Muffins and Biscuits 450 F. 

Ginger Bread and Molasses Mixture. 380 F. 

Plain Cake 380 F. 

Sponge Cake 350 F. 

Baked Custard 350 F. 


350" F. 

350 F. 

400 F. 

450 F. 

450 F. 

450 F. 

380 F. 

400 F. 

380 F. 
Higher in water 


A good cooking thermometer should be in every kitchen 
and may be obtained for 50 cents. A satisfactory oven ther- 
mometer which stands up in the oven costs $1.00. 

The three-meals-a-day problem can be solved some or 
all of the methods suggested in this chapter will help. Have 
you any other methods ? What do you think of the sugges- 
tions given here? 




1. Write out a day's menu, giving well "balanced" meals. 

A day's menu with poor combination of foods. 

2. Give a simple menu for a week for your own family, 

based on what your market affords at the time of 
writing. , Include "planned over" or overlapping 
meals ; similar cooking processes in the same meal ; 
desserts, etc., cooked before the time of serving. 

3. Make out a "purchase sheet" for these meals. 

4. Write out a time schedule for preparing the dinners 

that is, when to start cooking each dish and the order 
of cooking, so that the whole meal may be ready to 
serve at the desired time. 

5. Prepare and serve these meals to the family if possible. 

Report mistakes and changes you would make if the 
menus were repeated. 

Does this plan make the work more interesting? Is it 
time, labor, money and worry saving? 






IN many homes the cooking and daily cleaning have been 
so well planned that the work proceeds smoothly and 
easily, but the task that frequently throws the whole 
week into confusion and upsets a careful daily plan is the 
once-a-week laundry day. "Blue Monday" is not merely a 
cartoonist's joke, but the most trying day in the week the 
most fatiguing and the one likely to be the least organized. 
But the laundry problem need not be such drudgery. In 
fact, while it is extremely difficult to set down rules for 
cooking that will apply to the many different homes owing 
to the variations of taste even among people of the same 
income; and while cleaning processes vary owing to dif- 
ferent furnishings in homes, it is encouraging that laundry 
work lends itself most easily to "standardization." 

Cooking too often depends on the caprice of the family, 
the season, varying hours of meals, etc., and requires con- 
stant variety and adjustment of plans. The housekeeper 
must learn new dishes and adapt meals to the changing 
needs of a growing family. 

But laundry work is the one set of tasks which can be 
planned and followed year after year after the same iden- 
tical method, once that method is established. Here the 
housekeeper can simplify her laundry work and reduce it 
to the easiest form of standard practice in her particular 



family. Once the technique of washing flannels, removing 
stains, ironing, etc., is understood, she knows it for all time, 
and should be able to do it week in and week out with 
lessening strain. 

The origin of the word "launder" is from the Latin, 
"lavander," "to wash" or "to bathe in water" ; laundry work 
can therefore best be defined as the cleansing of fabrics 
by a water method, in contradistinction to "dry cleansing," 
which is the cleaning of fabrics by substances other than 
water, like gasoline, benzine, carbon tetrachloride or other 
solvents of grease. The first steps, therefore, to easier, 
more efficient work in the home laundry are knowledge of : 

1. Various textiles from which garments and furnishings 

are made. 

2. The effect of water and temperatures upon differing 


3. The action of various solvents and chemicals like soap, 

borax, soda, etc., on both water and textiles. 

4. The effect on textiles of various processes like rubbing, 

wringing, pounding, starching, ironing, etc. 

The two distinct classes of fibers from which all textiles 
are made are animal fibers wool and silk and vegetable 
fibers cotton and linen. 

The animal fibers are more easily affected by heat and 
by alkalies. Each wool* fiber is covered with small over- 
lapping scales lying all in one direction, which when the 
fiber is wet and warm, expand and tend to interlock. Rub- 
bing wool fibers directly with the hand, or with any me- 
chanical means causes the scales to interlock, the fibers to 
shorten, and thus the whole wool garment to shrink. Silk 
does not shrink but its fibers are weakened and its lustre les- 
sened by either alkalies or too great heat. 
. Vegetable fibers of cotton and linen are tougher than silk 


and wool and resist friction, heat and alkalies better. They 
can be treated with strong friction, high degree of heat and 
with dilute acids, alkalies and bleaching powder if these are 
thoroughly rinsed out and neutralised. Wool resists acids 
well, but bleaching powder harms it. In washing any 
material which is a combination fabric, it is best to follow 
the method safest for the weaker of the two fabrics ; i. e., 
if an undershirt is part wool and part cotton, it should be 
washed according to the method for wool. 

The degree of heat or cold of the water also greatly 
affects the cleansing process. Heat tends to expand the 
threads of the fabric, and the dirt caught in the threads is 
then more easily removed. But if the cloth is again cooled 
during the washing, the thread contracts and the dirt is still 
retained. It is therefore best to soak clothing in cold or 
tepid water, if the soaking plan is followed, so as not to 
first heat the fibers and then have them contract later, when 
the soaking water is cooled. The principle of temperatures 
to follow is, to begin with warm water, and to keep the 
water the same, or even a rising temperature, until the 
clothes are clean. 

Wool fibers, because of their peculiar formation, must not 
be soaked, or treated with temperatures of either extreme, 
but in "lukewarm" water of about 100 F., and likewise 
pressed with a medium hot iron. Silk, also, needs both 
water and heat of medium temperature. Cotton and linen 
being stronger can be treated with both cold and very hot 
water and very hot irons. 


Water is spoken of as "hard" or "soft," depending on 
the amount of lime (calcium) and magnesium salts it con- 
tains. Rainwater is best for laundry work ; it is "soft" 
because it will quickly form a good lather with common 


forms of soap. "Hard" water contains so much lime or 
magnesium salts that these combine with soap and prevent 
it from forming suds and doing its work; instead in hard 
water, "lime soap" is formed, which is insoluble and which 
appears as a white, curdy mass floating on top and through 
the water. White clothes which have been washed repeat- 
edly in unsoftened hard water are apt to have a gray 
appearance due to the lime soap formed on the fibers when 
the clothes, saturated with dirty soapy water, are rinsed in 
hard water. If there is any iron in the water, "iron soap" 
will be formed which may form iron rust stains on the 
clothes. Water containing much iron will give a red rust 
stain on bowls or water closet from a leaking valve. 

Experiments show that about 2 ounces of soap is wasted 
in softening one hundred gallons of water for each "degree" 
(grains per gallon) of hardness. Lake Michigan water, 
which is considered fairly soft, has a hardness of 8 degrees, 
and as 40 or 50 gallons is a usual quantity of water for 
an ordinary washing, 8 ounces of soap would be wasted in 
softening the water. 

Because of the waste of soap and the undesirable effects 
of lime soap, hard water should be softened for all laundry 
work. The most common and cheapest water softener is 
washing soda. // only the correct amount of washing soda 
is used, no washing soda is left in the water. When wash- 
ing soda, borax or ammonia is added to hard water, the 
salts of lime and magnesia unite with it, forming carbon- 
ates which are not very soluble and so come out as a fine 
white powder, giving the water "milky" appearance. This 
powder will settle in time, but does no harm. Any iron 
present is precipitated also. It is using too much washing 
soda or throwing it in "by the handful" that does damage. 

There is no very good household method of telling 
exactly how much washing soda to use. If the degree of 


hardness of the water can be learned from the local water 
department, about 2 /z ounce of washing soda per 100 gallons 
for each degree of hardness is the correct amount. For ex- 
ample, if the water has 20 degrees of hardness and 10 gal- 
lons is used in the tub, then I}/? oz. of washing soda will 
soften the tubfull. 

Always use washing soda in solution two Ibs. dissolved 
in a gallon of hot water makes a convenient strength ; then 
for each measuring cupful of the solution will contain I 
ounce of washing soda. When the degree of hardness of 
the water cannot be learned, add the soda solution J^ cupful 
at a time, mixing well, until a little of the water will give a 
suds with a* small amount of soap solution. If sufficient 
soda has been used to give the water a soapy feeling when 
rubbed between the thumb and ringers, too much has been 
added for softening; then reduce the quantity. 

Borax as a water softener has the advantage that using 
too great a quantity is not so harmful as too much washing 
soda. It has less softening power than washing soda, 15^ 
oz. being equivalent to i oz. of soda. A safe proportion to 
use is I oz. to 10 gallons of water with a hardness of i.o 
degrees. Two level tablespoon fuls make about an ounce 
or better, make a solution of 2 Ibs. to the gallon (i oz. to 
the cup). All softeners should be dissolved and well mixed 
with the water and the softening finished with a little soap 
solution before the clothes are put in. 

Use the correct proportion of washing soda or borax so- 
lution in all soaking, washing, boiling and rinsing water; 
bluing water, unless very hard, need not be softened. 

Hard water cannot be made as soft as rain water, for a 
trace of lime salts and an appreciable amount of magnesium 
salts cannot be removed by any household methods, except 
by adding soap solution. 

Lime soap will dissolve in gasoline, kerosene and other 


like solvents, which probably accounts for the whitening 
effect of the "kerosene boil" and similar methods of cleans- 
ing cloths. 


Soap is the resulting product of combining fats and oils 
with forms of alkalies. Old-fashioned "soft soap" was 
made from the lye of wood ashes and melted fat. Modern 
"hard" or cake soap is made from caustic soda and various 
fats ; in order to be satisfactory, the combining should be so 
perfect that there is no "free alkali," which is particularly 
harmful to wool and to colored clothing, or free fat in the 
soap. Also there should be no adulteration. Resin is 
nearly always used in the manufacture of. common yellow 
soap because it reduces the cost ; but an excessive proportion 
of resin soap will cause trouble in ironing if not completely 
rinsed out or if used with hard water. Naphtha, kerosene, 
borax, etc., are sometimes added to laundry soap to aid in 
cutting grease and cleansing. 

Soaps are classed as mild, medium or strong, and should 
be used correspondingly on delicate, durable and coarse fab- 
rics. Only white soap should be used on wool and colored 
clothing ; yellow soap on very soiled pieces and rough work. 

Various soap powders are also on the market, which are 
mixtures of soap and some alkali, as washing soda, borax, 
etc. It is a better plan to use a good plain soap and the 
additional material uncombined, as then one is more sure of 
the ingredients and the cost is less. Washing powders are 
to be avoided, as many of them are dangerous and all of 
them are expensive. A great many defects in laundry work 
can be traced to their use. Soap chips, however, are merely 
regular soap cut in small pieces, but this can be done at 
home, using a lo-cent grater such as commonly used for 
shredding vegetables. 


Soap solution has the peculiar property of taking up the 
fine particles which make up "dirt." It also will dissolve 
or emulsify the grease and oil which usually holds the dirt. 
Thus while water is nearly a universal solvent, soap and 
water will take up many more substances. The more grease 
present in or on clothing, the stronger the soap or the "cut- 
ting" properties needed. Soap has antiseptic qualities and 
acts as a partial disinfectant. 


The removing of soil and grease from fabrics is greatly 
facilitated by kneading and twisting of the fabrics which 
will naturally assist in loosening it from the fabric. There- 
fore one of the most important steps in washing is the 
application of a mechanical means for moving the garment, 
pounding it, forcing water through it, and thus loosening 
dirt from the fibers. This friction or movement has been 
accomplished by varying methods in all countries, from 
the primitive rubbing of the garment on a stone to the 
modern washing machine. The time-honored washboard on 
which the knuckles were rubbed as well as the clothes is 
slowly becoming obsolete, and in any truly efficient laundry, 
must give place to a more improved method of forcing the 
soapy water through the fabric. 

Water must also be squeezed or wrung out of the cloth- 
ing, and for this purpose wringing, preferably by a mechan- 
ical wringer, is the next step, as wringing both extracts the 
water and smoothes the article so that it can be handled 
more easily at the next step, which is starching. It is not 
necessary that clothes be starched, but it is done for the 
sake of appearance, and so that they will keep clean longer, 
as the starched surface does not absorb dirt as readily as 
the unfinished material. Ironing also may be spoken of as 


a luxury in the cleansing of clothes, but it makes clothes 
appear better and feel more smooth to the touch as well as 
making the use of starch possible. 


Stains should be treated before washing for the reason 
that they may be spread or "set" during the process. Re- 
move as follows : 

GREASE SPOTS : Gasoline, kerosene. 

AXLE GREASE AND OLD GREASE SPOTS: Rub on lard, let stand over 

night and put through the machine. 
PAINT: Turpentine or lard. 

COFFEE, FRUIT, WINE STAINS : Pour boiling water through. 
CHOCOLATE COCOA: Borax, soap and cold water. 
MILDEW: Lemon juice and sunshine; bleaching powder solution. 

Mildew is a growth of mold and if advanced cannot be removed. 
SCORCH : Water and sunshine, repeatedly. 
GRASS STAINS : Alcohol ; or rub on molasses and wash. 
IRON RUST: Lemon juice, salt and sunlight or dilute hydrochloric 

acid for bad stains; rinse and neutralize with ammonia. 
INK: Cold water before it dries, followed by lemon juice and water. 

Small spots use "ink eradicator" (25c at drug store). Large 

stains, bleaching powder solution (cold) and vinegar; rinse and 

neutralize with ammonia. 


Whether to soak the clothes or not depends upon condi- 
tions ; it undoubtedly loosens the dirt and saves time in the 
actual washing, but it takes time, soap and water. Soaking 
in unsoftened hard water gives unfavorable results. Hard 
water always should be softened before the clothes are put 
in it. The method of wetting the clothes, rubbing soap on 
the soiled portions, then filling up the tub with hard water 
will deposit lime soap directly on the goods ; the water will 


not penetrate well and more harm than good will be done. 
If very dirty clothes are soaked with clean ones the dirt may 
become distributed on the clean parts and a general grayness 
result which is hard to wash out. 

When a power washer is used and the clothes are not very 
much soiled, labor is saved by omitting the soaking ; or soak- 
ing for a short time only in warm water and washing for a 
longer time in the machine. Soaking for half an hour in 
warm water is as effective as over night in cold water. It is 
a good plan to wring the clothes out of the soaking water, 
to get rid of as much loose dirt as possible, for this saves 
soap in the washing. 

Handkerchiefs which are much soiled should be soaked in 
salt water (i cup of salt, 2 quarts of water) to remove 


Even with the washing machine, many clothes can be 
boiled to advantage, such as face towels, bed linen and 
underwear. Boiling also sterilizes the clothing and should 
always be done to handkerchiefs, etc. The clothes are 
usually wrung out, and placed in the boiler with cold water 
(softened) and a quantity of soap solution or soap chip and 
brought slowly to boiling; then the clothes may boil, not 
more than ten minutes. Long boiling with soda or yellow 
soap tends to yellow the clothes. A brass or copper wire 
grating fitted with hoop-like handles may be placed in the 
boiler previous to laying in the clothes. Then when it is 
desired to drain the clothes, these handles may be lifted up 
and the clothes allowed to drain on the rack before being 
lifted out. Never pack the boiler too full. 

Various substances like a cupful of turpentine or kerosene, 
a half-pound of shaved paraffine, may be added to the boiler 
with the soap to increase the cleansing effect. The percolat- 


ing device spoken of elsewhere is excellent used in the boil- 
ing process. Except in the "paraffine boil" only clean clothes 
should be boiled, for boiling will serve only to still further 
"set" the dirt of dirty clothes. 


Much of the poor quality of laundry work is due to inad- 
equate rinsing. One cannot rinse too much, and two, or even 
three, rinsing waters are better than one. The first rinsing 
water should be hot in order to remove the soap and dirt ; 
and the second may be warm or cold so that there is less 
transition from the rinsing to the bluing water. Rinsing 
must be well done before bluing ; otherwise the clothes may 
become spotted. 


Bluing is added to cover up any yellowness of the white 
clothes. When the clothes appear blue too much bluing has 
been used. Well washed and rinsed clothes which are dried 
in the sunshine in clean surroundings do not need bluing. 

Practically all of the liquid bluing and some of the solid 
blues on the market are made of "Prussian Blue," which is 
a compound of iron. Hot soap or alkali solution will decom- 
pose this compound and iron rust stain may be deposited on 
the fabric. This can be shown by bluing a piece of cloth a deep 
shade, drying and boiling in hot soap or soda solution. One 
advantage of soaking is that most of the bluing is removed. 

Indigo blue and ultramarine blue contain no iron and can 
be obtained as "ball bluing," though with some difficulty. 
The commercial laundries use aniline blues, sold by laundry 
supply houses. A substitute is to dissolve one of the loc 
packages of blue aniline dyes sold by nearly all drug stores, 
in a gallon of hot water. This will make a strong blue, 
less expensive and better than the liquid blues commonly 


sold. It will not give streaks of bluing and cannot make 
iron rust stains on the clothes. 

If ball bluing is used, enclose it in a small square of 
muslin and test the amount of bluing in the water by bluing 
a small sample. Some fabrics, such as loosely woven mesh 
underwear, absorb more bluing than others. Clothes should 
not be allowed to stand in such bluing water but should be 
moved about either by hands or wooden paddles to prevent 
the blue from settling and the clothes from becoming 


The consistency of the starch depends on the thickness 
of the fabric to be starched. Starch is known as thick, 
medium, or thin, and garments requiring the thickest starch, 
such as cuffs, shirt bosoms, etc., should be starched first, as 
the water squeezed from clothing gradually thins the starch. 
Garments treated with boiled starch should be most thor- 
oughly dried before being dampened, and dampened several 
hours before being ironed. 


Drying clothes, especially in the sunshine, serves also to 
disinfect them. Clothes must be pinned properly and care- 
fully, either on the line or dryer, to get them back into 
normal shape; i.e., stockings must be hung by the feet, 
shirtwaists by the collar with the two sleeves pinned up. 
The better the pinning the more satisfactory the drying and 
also the ironing. Great care must be taken to have the line 
or dryer perfectly clean and the clothes so well pinned that 
they will not blow down. In stormy weather it is a good 
plan to pin the small clothing, such as children's underwear, 
napkins, etc., on to the line while it is piled on the laundry 
table, and then carry it out piled in a basket, which will 


save the worker standing and pinning so long a time out- 
doors. All things of a kind towels, napkins, underwear, 
etc. should be kept together in a washing and drying, as 
this saves time in ironing and putting away. 

A cheap wheel tray of wood, homemade, and mounted on 
small baby buggy wheels, is useful for wheeling the basket 
about, if the lawn is smooth; or even an "abandoned" go- 
cart will be found useful for the same purpose, to save 
stooping and lifting. A simple stand on which to place the 
basket near the revolving "umbrella" dryer, if used, will 
serve the same purpose. 


After the clothes are dry, they are taken from the dryer 
or outdoors, sprinkled, rolled smooth and then made into 
a tight roll and allowed to stand several hours or all night 
before ironing begins. The longer they stand the more 
evenly will they be dampened. Always use tepid water for 
sprinkling, and either the bottle spray which will fit any 
bottle opening or a whisk broom, or a special clothes sprin- 
kler, . but never the hands, which make the work uneven. 
Table linen needs to be sprinkled most; bedding requires 
little dampening; starched pieces, especially flat starched 
pieces, should be very damp. 


The washing and ironing should be done in a room sepa- 
rate from the kitchen whenever possible. This for sanitary 
reasons, and also because nothing causes more confusion 
than to try and wash in the kitchen while carrying on the 
work of meal preparation three times a day. There is much 
to be said in favor of having the laundry situated on the first 
floor with sunny exposure, avoidance of running up and 
down, and good ventilation ; in many continental cities laun- 
dries are located on the flat roofs which permit steam and 
odors to escape and clothes to dry in the sun, as is done in 
many city apartment houses in our own country. But in 
most cases a well planned section of the basement is the 
preferable location in detached homes. 

If possible, the laundry-room should be considered before 
building and located as far away as possible from a heating 
plant, coal and ash containers. An entry directly from the 
laundry to the yard is desirable so that no waste steps are 
taken. The surface of the walls may be the original unfin- 
ished or smooth plaster, painted or unpainted, or tiles. The 
floor should be of cement, linoleum or one of the new com- 
position materials that permit perfect, easy flushing wood 
is not to be tolerated. It should have a floor drain if possi- 
ble, with floor slanting slightly to it. 

The laundry needs very adequate light for thorough 
washing and perfect ironing. High-silled windows are pref- 
erable, and enough and large windows. Transom windows, 
especially if the ceiling be low, will assist in letting out 
steam, and keeping the worker cool without causing a direct 
draught on the worker. A small electric fan blowing air 
out of the highest windows will help to get rid of steam if 
ventilation is poor. 




If artificial light is needed, it should be so placed as not to 
be directly in the eyes of the worker, but come from the 
side, in an adjustable "drop." Set tubs are best or washing 




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Washing group compact and separate from the ironing group. 

machine placed at right angles to a window for the same 
reason. It is possible to make the laundry attractive in 
appearance by using color combinations like blue and white, 
gray and white, tan and green, etc. Tables, stool and bench 
of unfinished maple are neat and attractive. 

A built-in closet will be helpful for keeping supplies. One 


side may be narrow, for storing the ironing board and 
bench ; the other side may contain narrow shelves for the 
various soaps, bleaches, irons, and needful holders, pins, etc., 
as well as the utensils which should be kept especially for 
laundry use (see list). 

The steps of different processes of laundry work are: 

1. Sorting, mending, and removing of stains. 

2. Soaking. 

3. Actual washing. 

4. Rinsing. 

5. Bluing. 

6. Starching. 

7. Hanging up and drying. 

8. Ironing and laying away. 

Naturally, each of the steps depends on the other, and the 
efficiency of the whole laundry work depends on the high 
quality and skill with which each part is done. For instance, 
good ironing cannot be done on clothes that are either poorly 
washed or improperly starched or proper bluing on clothes 
poorly rinsed. 

Just as we found in the labor-saving kitchen that the 
stove, sink and table must be arranged according to the 
order in which food preparation and clearing away were 
done, so we find that laundry equipment must be arranged 
as nearly as possible according to the way that the laundry 
processes follow each other. Although the mending is gen- 
erally done in some room other than the laundry, it is in the 
laundry that the first step sorting begins. For greater 
convenience, a laundry chute, built in the studding, will 
permit soiled clothes to be conveyed from any story of the 
house direct to the laundry. This saves carrying a bundle 


of wash or throwing it downstairs. A sanitary basket may 
be placed in the base of the chute and the chute itself should 
be well made and preferably lined with zinc, at least in the 
base, for sanitary reasons. 

The next step after sorting will be the soaking, which can 
be accomplished best in a permanent set tub. Since a large 
washing cannot all be soaked in one tub, it is best to have 
two or even three set tubs so that time may be saved in 
washing and rinsing without the effort of stopping to empty 
and re-fill. The actual washing may be done either in the 
set tub or in some kind of a washing machine. For ease of 
cleaning and convenience, the washing machine should be 
movable or at least placed in such relation to the set tubs 
that the worker can walk all around it. Boiling enters into 
the washing process, and so the stove on which the boiling 
is done must be considered, and must be so placed as to be 
in a step-saving relation to both the washer and the set tubs. 
When the clothes are wrung, they pass from the washer to 
a basket or container and here the washing process actually 

From the time the clothes are dried, through the various 
steps of sprinkling and ironing, they do not need any of the 
washing equipment. Therefore it is preferable to plan the 
laundry so that these two processes can be carried on inde- 
pendently and yet make use of commonly used equipment. 
Briefly, then, any laundry should be arranged so that these 
two processes and the special equipment of each be kept 
separate, i. e., 

(1) Washing sorting, soaking, washing, rinsing, bluing, 

wringing, starching, hanging up. 

(2) Drying sprinkling, folding, ironing or mangling, air- 

ing and laying away. 



A study of Diagram A will show that by the proper plac- 
ing of laundry equipment it is just as possible to route laun- 
dry work along a connected chain of steps and to keep the 
two divisions of work separate. This will prevent double 
handling, cross-tracking and retracing of steps. Even 
though the equipment of many homes be simpler than given 
in the diagram, the same idea holds true in laundry as in 
kitchen : 

(a) Group related equipment together. 

(b) Divide the room so that the two different processes has 

each its separate chain of steps. 


No one other household task can be so easily affected by 
equipment and installation as can laundry work. In fact, it 
might be said that 50 per cent of the drudgery of laundry 
work vanishes when permanent plumbing connections and 
tubs are installed in place. That is, much of the so-called 
drudgery of washing has nothing whatever to do with the 
actual washing of the garments and the removal of dirt, but 
is concerned entirely with lifting and emptying pails of 
water, lifting tubs, emptying the boiler, etc. Permanent 
plumbing at once removes the need for this effort and strain. 
Also a worker often condemns a good washing machine 
solely because of the trouble she has carrying and emptying 
the machine. As one prominent dealer said the other day : 
"Fully one-half the time is required for work which is un- 
necessary when hot and cold water and drain connections 
are provided." 

The most efficient installation is that in which there is one 
or more permanent set tubs connected with hot and cold 
water, and a washing machine properly placed and sim- 


ilarly connected. But even when there is no hot and cold 
water supply, it is easy to install the simplest set tub of 
slate or composition to take the place of the frequently seen 
(portable) tubs, which usually means emptying and filling 
with a pail by hand. 

In country sections, cistern water can be stored in a high 
tank, connected with plumbing or forced through these 
pipes by a compressed air tank. There is no excuse for 
the back-breaking work attendant on washing due to the 
mere lifting of tubs and heavy buckets of water when tubs 
can be installed permanently at so little cost. Even if there 
is no running water, stationary tubs are better because an 
easy way of draining them other than by hand can be 
arranged. They can be filled with water for rinsing and 
bluing directly from a pump, connected with hose or chute. 

When no running water is present, very careful arrange- 
ment must eliminate every extra step and effort. In the 
diagram shown, a hand pump is mounted on a concrete base, 
with a trap drain underneath, the floor gently sloping to this 
drain. A 2-inch pipe with elbow carries the waste water 
from the tubs to the drain, and another similar pipe is 
attached to the washer outlet, and similarly carried to the 
drain to avoid lifting heavy pails of dirty water. Cold 
water is pumped directly into the boiler for heating and 
into the tubs for soaking and rinsing through a short length 
of hose. Only the heated water need be carried by hand 
from boiler to washer and tubs. A boiler with a faucet 
outlet saves dangerous bailing of hot water. 

The tubs shown are of the "portable" galvanized iron 
kind, mounted on a washbench 26 inches high, to avoid 
stooping. They are fitted with "basin plugs" and rubber 
stoppers which cost about 25c each. It will be seen from 
the arrangement that pump, tubs, washer and boiler are so 
placed as to avoid every extra step in the work. In a sep- 



arate group is a "pullman" ironing board which fits back 
into a shallow closet when not in use, a table for sorting and 
for ironing large pieces, and a closet for laundry supplies. 
A hand mangle could easily be mounted on this table. Iron- 
ing board is 33 inches high, table same height. A high stool 
is used for work. Light is given from two sides, and exit 
directly on drying yard. 

(See page 256. "Standard Practice for Washing, No. 1," for method of use.) 

It cannot be urged too strongly that the country laundry 
be fitted with running water as well as a drainage system. 
In many country homes some form of high tank or com- 
pressed air system supplies water to barn and kitchen and 
it means only a slight additional expense to supply the laun- 
dry. Even the simplest kind of a high tank filled with a 
force pump operated by "man" power, with drainage system 


will do away with carrying buckets and hand filling and 
emptying which will reduce the labor at least one-half. 

When the laundry work is heavy, as is often the case in 
the country, a power washer and wringer, operated with a 
small gasoline engine, will reduce the work still more. A 
reliable 1^2 horse-power gasoline engine can be purchased as 
low as $30.00 and will have many other uses in the country 
home. A power operated washer and wringer costs about 
$25.00, or there is now on the market a washing machine 
and wringer with a small y 2 horse-power gasoline engine 
geared directly to it, which is easily started and operated; 
price $65.00. No investment will pay better dividends in 
the saving of health and strength. 


Composition granite set tub, 48x24x16, 2 compartment $5-5o 

Composition granite set tub, 60x24x16, 2 compartment 7.00 

Composition granite set tub, 60x24x16, 2 compartment, with 

back 10.00 

Composition granite set tub, 72x24x16, 3 compartment, with 

back 12.00 

Composition granite set tub, 90x24x16, 3 compartment, with 

back 15.00 

Enameled, 2 section tubs, back in one piece, with pedestal 45.00 

Enameled, 3 section tubs, back in one piece, with pedestal .... 65.00 
Enameled, 2 section tubs, no back, iron legs 20.00 

The height at which the tub is placed is most important. 
Fully as much backbreaking is done over the laundry tub 
as over the kitchen sink. A convenient height for a woman 
5 feet 6 is to place the tubs so that their bottoms are about 
22 inches from the floor, or the edge of the tub 38 inches 
from the floor in a straight line. The regulation iron legs 
are generally three or four inches lower than this, but they 
can easily be placed on wooden blocks so that the tub can be 
used by the worker without stooping, but as she is standing 



Unless an unlimited amount of water is heated by means 
of a coil in the furnace, or by a separate gas heater, some 
kind of laundry stove will be needed to heat water for wash- 
ing for the boiler and possibly for the irons. The best type 
is the so-called "drum" stove of iron, with depressions 
around the drum in which to heat the sad-irons. Such a 
stove will heat water in the pipes, heat the boiler and irons 



at the same time. But if gas is available, the laundry stove 
may be dispensed with entirely and its place taken by a 
simple, two-burner hot plate. A piece of clean sheet iron- 
should be used under the irons used on a gasplate to 
keep them clean. This may be mounted on a table or stand ; 
one burner will do for heating the boiler and the other for 
heating the irons and making starch. 

But probably the most efficient arrangement of all is the 
combination clothes dryer and gas-operated heater. Here 


we have a portion of the laundry room fitted with drying- 
racks which come specially made and can be fitted to any 
size corner or room. These racks, or more properly, the 
enclosed drying room, are heated with an individual gas 
stove, and this in turn can be used for the boiler, starch and 


iron so that the heat of one stove will dry the clothes, boil 
them and heat the irons. In a permanent house of any pre- 
tensions such a dryer should be installed because it permits 
a very even quality of drying without danger of wind- 
whipping and freezing, especially in winter and rainy 
weather. When yard space is scarce, this is by far the best 
permanent plan. The objection that this indoor method 
does not keep the clothes white is not true, if the drier is 
sufficiently ventilated, and the clothes adequately rinsed. 


In small homes where such a built-in dryer is not pos- 
sible, another plan is to use the combination outdoor-indoor 
"umbrella" drier. This consists of a pole fitted with eight 
or twelve radiating arms which can be used as an outdoor 
fixture, especially suited for sunny days. It is so made that 
the arms can be detached and fastened into sockets prepared 
for them along the laundry wall so that they can also be 
used for indoor drying. 


Still another dryer is one especially suited for very small 
homes and apartments. This consists of a light, wooden 
rack fitted with pulleys so that it can be raised and lowered 
from the ceiling, bearing the clothes to be dried out of the 
way. Smaller racks on the umbrella type are excellent for 
use in the laundry, on which to lay the freshly ironed clothes, 
and are much better than the old-time "horse" which was 
so easily knocked down. 

A few special drying devices will make the care of clothes 


easier. One of these is the wooden or metal stocking 
stretchers which keep the socks in shape and prevent them 
from shrinking; another is the wire garment stretcher on 
which shirts and bodies may be kept shapely. These cost 
only 5c each, and a half dozen will save much mussing and 

Lowered for hanging on clothes, then raised for drying. 

crumpling. A clothes reel which can be stretched across the 
room, will assist in indoor drying. 


A table is as necessary in the laundry as in the kitchen 
because on it clothes are sprinkled and sorted and its broad 
surface offers the most excellent space for ironing doilies 
and other large pieces too wide for the board. A hard 
maple table is best, with a separate fitted ironing quilt. There 



is also an excellent new combination table board on the 
market. This is a table whose top lifts up and discloses an 
ironing-board which can then be lifted out and put in place; 
and kept there when not in use so that it will stay clean. 
The one point to increase the efficiency of an ironing- 


*tD VIEW- 



From Housekeepers Conference Report, University of Missouri. 

board is that it must be steady and of the right height to 
allow the worker to exert pressure with comfort. Far too 
many ironing-boards are wobbly, are even dangerously in- 
clined to slip, and nothing is more inefficient than to rest the 
board on the back of a chair. 

If the laundry room is permanent, the ironing-board can 
also be made permanent by being fitted to a heavy iron leg 
screwed into the floor. This is the type of board seen in 


commercial laundries and institutions and will give far bet- 
ter service than the common, collapsible wooden board and 
stand. If the board cannot be clamped to a leg, it can, at 
least, be put on hinges and fastened permanently to a wall. 
It can then be laid up against the wall or in a shallow board 
closet when not in use, and let down at a moment's notice, 
and will be much steadier than the board mounted on a 
stand. This is called the "pullman" board. 

Broad, blunt boards give wider ironing surface than the 
frequently too narrow board used in the home. A perma- 
nent attachable metal ironing stand can be fastened to the 


board to take the place of the awkward ready-to-f ail-off 
"stand" of wrought iron commonly used. 

Then comes the question of the cover or pad for the 
board. Another poor method followed in the home is to 
tack the cover on each week. This causes tearing and is a 
great deal of trouble. There can be bought several kinds 
of ironing cover fasteners. One is a set of strong, steel 
hooks to clasp the under side of the cover together. An- 
other is a set of pins and tape which permits the cover to 
be laced up and fastened securely. Even the simple plan 
of sets of tape at intervals is preferable to the untidy habit 
of using tacks. 

The ironing cover may be of table padding or felt and 
the cover should be hemmed and neatly finished. A special 
felt pad and cover come fitted with a fastening device ; the 
whole pad can be removed easily and laid away in a 


The height of an ironing board for a woman 5 feet 6 with 
the usual arm length is preferably 34 inches. If a table is 
used for ironing, it can be from 32 to 34 inches. The point 
of height must be kept in mind fully as much in laundry 
equipment as in kitchen equipment. 


With either coal or gas as fuel, the usual type sad iron 
can be used. For the sake of economy, three of the irons 
may be covered with an inverted pan or a cover made for 
the purpose to prevent radiation of heat. The point against 


all irons not self -heating is that the worker must make 
frequent trips to and fro for fresh irons, thus wasting time 
and steps. This waste can be cut considerably by placing 
the worker near to the stove and its iron. If electricity is 
available, by far the most individual labor-saving piece of 
laundry equipment is the electrically heated iron. Here the 
heating unit is in the base of the iron so that it is possible 
for the worker to take and use it anywhere, even on a porch, 
or wherever a connecting 'cord will permit ; also, as in all 
electric equipment, the heat of the electric iron is under 
direct control, and it is also possible to regulate it in some 


irons to low, medium or high. There is little radiation, no 
excessive heat around the worker, and clothes are uniformly 
pressed. The working surface of the iron can be kept in 
perfect condition with no trouble. 

The heat unit in any electric iron should be so constructed 
that the heat is evenly distributed, and not concentrated at 

Electric Gasoline Gas 

the tip only. There should be a "cut-off," and preferably 
a "swinging crane" connection to keep the cord taut and up 
out of the way of the worker, to permit more rapid work 
and prevent sagging. A less expensive arrangement, though 
less effective, is to suspend the cord with a stout string and 
flexible spring (like a bird cage spring). 

The gas irons are a little more clumsy to operate than 
electric irons, though with the new metal flexible gas tubing, 
the difference is not great. They have all the advantages 
of the electric irons and cost much less to run less than 
heating sad irons on a gas stove. The tubing should be 
suspended by a spring as suggested. 

Following are the proper weights of irons for different 
kinds of work: 

2 to 3 Ibs Baby clothes 

4 to 5 Ibs Lingerie and shirt waists 

6 to 8 Ibs General ironing 

8 to 10 Ibs Flat work, tablecloth, etc. 

10 to 12 Ibs Pressing men's suits 

3-lb. flounce iron Petticoats and ruffles 

Troy irons Polishing shirt bosoms 



Another type of iron especially practical in the country 
where no current is available is the portable iron using 
gasoline or alcohol. This type of iron contains a small reser- 
voir for the heating fluid. In the base of the iron is a small 
burner or generator which is pre-heated before the outer 
iron itself becomes hot. This generating is done by pouring 
a few tablespoons of alcohol or gasoline under the generator, 
lighting it and then turning on the air valve which permits 
the mixture of air with the gasoline, thus securing a hotter 
flame. Such irons are perfectly safe, come in several sizes 
and are as satisfactory as any electric iron, except that they 
are a little more difficult to operate. They are far preferable, 
however, to the ordinary sad iron in every case where the 
worker wants to avoid a roaring stove and the need of 
standing near it in order to get hot irons. By regulating the 
valve on such an iron, a very intense degree of heat can be 


Electric (light) household iron, weight 5 Ibs. with 6-foot cord and 
lamp-socket plug ; operating cost, less than 2c per hour. 

Electric (heavy) laundry iron, 7 Ibs. with cord and plug; operating 
cost, 2c per hour. 

Specially heavy electric laundry iron, 9 Ibs. with cord and plug; 
operating cost 3c per hour. 

Self-heating gasoline iron, weight s l /2 Ibs.; operating cost, Vsc per 

Gas iron, weight 6 Ibs. with 6 feet of flexible steel tubing; operating 
cost, Vsc per hour. 


Mangles, or ironing machines, are of two types ; one, the 
cold mangle, the other the heated ironer. The cold mangle 



resembles a wringer and has rolls of hard wood with springs 
which control the pressure. Clothes are slightly dampened 
and folded, and put through the mangle. They are pressed 
without gloss, but not dried. Some cold mangles clamp 


readily to the table; others come with a bass or frame of 
their own. The heated ironer may be run by hand, or by 
power. In either case, the "shoe" (which is a steel cylin- 
der and which corresponds to the ironing surface of a hand 
iron) must be heated either by gas, gasoline or electricity. 
This steel "shoe" is outside an inner cloth-covered cylinder 
which corresponds to the ironing-board. Pieces are laid over 
the padded roll, and pressed against the hot "shoe," thus 






both smoothing and drying the article at the same time. 
These ironers come in several types, as: 

(1) Gas-heated, hand operated, price $20 to $35. 

(2) Gas-heated, electrically operated; price $60 to $125. 

(3) Electrically heated and electrically operated; price $200 


(4) Gasoline heated and operated; price $35 to $45. 

(5) Cold roll mangle, hand operated; price $6 to $20. 

Ironers can be used for "flat" pieces or garments, i. e., 
table and bed linen and towels, and also on many ordinary 
garments, as night gowns, rompers, aprons, etc., by prac- 
ticing how to avoid buttons or hooks. The ironer saves a 
great deal of time, since the larger surface is equal to a 
surface of 6 or 8 hand irons. Ironers can be fitted for a 
power drive, and operated by the gas engine which is used 
to pump water, run the washing machine, etc. In order to 
heat an ironer thus driven, it is necessary to use the type 
that has a small gasoline tank and generator attached to it. 
While such a tank is fairly safe it should be used with cau- 
tion. There is also another method, that of storing or bury- 
ing a tank of gasoline in the ground and making the neces- 
sary connections. This removes considerable of the fire 
risk. Such a power operated laundry is most successful in 
rural homes, especially where there is a man to take the 
responsibility of cranking and operating the gas engine, as 
in general a gas engine is too much of a strain for a woman. 
An exception is the washing machine made by the Maytag 
Company, which has a very small engine directly geared to 
the machine. It will also operate an ironer. 

Wherever there is a large family, and artificial gas, the 
value of the ironer is very considerable, and its first cost 
would easily be covered by a few months' use. The hand 
power ironing machines usually require two persons to 


operate them well ; the motor or power machines are easily 
operated by one person. 

Other advantages of an ironer are the uniform heat, the 
saving in trotting back and forth with the usual method of 
heating irons, and the great amount of time saved over the 


A dolly type washer with small engine direct connected. Will run with 

gasoline, gas or alcohol. The engine is started by pressing the 

foot on the flanged wheel. 

method of using an individual iron. A good family size is 
a 48-inch machine that will iron a tablecloth once folded. 
The hourly output of ironers varies according to their size, 
but the capacity of gas-heated models per hour is about: 
25-30 bedsheets, tablecloths or centerpieces per hour. (De- 
pends on size and thickness.) (20 inches by 40 inches size) 
150-180 towels per hour. (These estimates do not include 
folding which must be done by hand.) 






Probably the one most important piece of equipment in 
the modern laundry is the mechanical washer. As was 
pointed out, the chief cause of fatigue in the hand method 
of washing clothes is due solely to the physical effort of 
rubbing and pounding the clothes by hand on some type of 
washboard. The washboard is the extreme example of a 




household device which causes waste motions and physical 
drudgery. No one has had the courage to count the number 
of rubs done by the hands of a woman in the usual family 
wash! The mechanical washer is the greatest of labor- 
savers because it truly replaces entirely hand labor. No 
matter in what other direction one must economize, money 
should be expended for some type of washing machine. No 


other process is so mechanical as the actual rubbing of 
clothes, which requires no attention from the mind. There- 
fore it is the one process that should be given over entirely 
to a mechanical servant, and thus relieve the woman of what 
is only pure manual labor. 

An inquiry recently showed that there were 125 different 
manufacturers of washing machines in the United States, 
but these machines with few exceptions fall clearly into one 
of four types. Before purchasing, the principles of each of 
these types and its method of operation should be under- 
stood. The various types are as follows : 

1. The "Dolly," or agitator type, frequently called the "ro- 

tary." Here a "wooden milkstool" or dasher revolves 
and reverses in the center of the tub while churning 
the clothes. This type has many modifications, such 
as corrugated boards around the side of the tub ; or 
the lid and tub both may be grooved, thus adding to 
the friction exerted on the clothes. 

2. The Cylinder type. This consists of inner and outer 

drums either of metal or of wood. The inner drum is 
perforated and has shelves which lift the clothes and 
drop them back into the water as this inner drum 
revolves. The action is then reversed, after a few 
revolutions, thus forcing the water through the clothes 
with a strong force. 

3. The rocking or oscillating type. This consists of a metal 

or wooden box-like tub which rocks back and forth, 
cleaning the clothes by throwing them rapidly from 
side to side. Sometimes this box is corrugated, which 
adds friction to the process. 

4. The vacuum type. Here both pressure and suction is 

exerted directly on the clothes by means of one or 
several metal cones, which alternately press and re- 
lease the clothing. 



Any one of these types may be operated by hand, by- 
power (gasoline), or by motor (electric). The mistake 
should not be made of choosing the washer on the basis of 
the power used to operate it, but choice should be based on 
the principle of the washer, and its action and effect on the 
clothes; that is, not whether it is an "electric" washer or 
a "hand" washer ; but how it washes. . 

Cover of the machine tipped back showing the agitator or "dolly." 

In the "dolly" type, the clothes are rubbed somewhat, so 
that this type is most suitable for heavy coarse clothing, as 
on the farm where overalls, aprons and heavy bedding 
form a large part of the wash. 

In the "cylinder" washer, the clothes are not touched by 
any rubbing device, but are cleansed entirely by the water 
being forced through them, and by the clothes themselves 
being rapidly moved. This type is used in commercial laun- 
dries. The load drains well and can be rinsed and even 
blued in such a machine. 


In the "rocking" type there is also no direct friction, as 
the clothes are cleaned by being thrown rapidly from one 
side of the washer to the other, thus forcing the soapy 
water through and through the clothes. 

Both of these types are good for all general family use, 
except that in these types operated by motor, the action is too 
strong to safely wash in them lingerie, fine baby clothes or 


other very dainty garments, which should not be placed in 
the washer, or should be enclosed in cheese cloth bags, 
which will take the strain but not interfere with the 

In the "vacuum" type there is considerable pressure di- 
rectly on the clothes as well as suction produced by the 
various bells. It is probable that the vacuum type is easier 
on fine clothing than any other type, especially if it is a 
hand model. 

The following representative washing machines are ar- 
ranged according to type: 



The Maytag Co., Newton, Iowa trie), 118 Sidney St., St. Louis, 

(hand, electric, gasoline or gas Mo. 

engine). The Grinnell Washing Machine 

Horton Manfg. Co., Ft. Wayne, Co., Grinnell, Iowa (hand and 

Ind. (hand, water, motor, elec- power). 

trie). Voss Bros. Manfg. Co., Daven- 

The American Washer Co. port, Iowa (hand and power). 

(hand, water, gasoline, elec- 


Hurley Machine Co., Chicago Pittsburgh Gauge & Supply Co., 

(electric). Pittsburgh, Pa., "Gainaday" 

Gilespie-Eden Mfg. Co., Pater- (electric). 

son, N. J. (electric). Apex Electric Distributing Co., 

Western Electric Co., Chicago Cleveland, O. (electric). 


The Judd Laundry Machine Co. Apex Appliance Co., Chicago, 

(electric), Chicago, 111. 111. (electric). 

Boss Washing Machine Co. 1900 Washer Co., Birmingham, 

(hand, etc.), Cincinnati, Ohio. N. Y. (electric). 


Syracuse Washing Machine Co., Almetal Mfg. Co., St. Louis, Mo. 
Syracuse, N. Y. (hand and (hand and electric), 


Vacuum and Centrifugal Dryer 
Klymax Mfg. Co., 115 N. Des- Laundry-ette Mfg. Co., Cleve- 

plaines St., Chicago, 111. (elec- land, Ohio (electric). 


Note. For fuller list, see "Laundering at Home," bulletin of Am. 
Washing Machine Mfgs. Assn., 10 S. LaSalle St., Chicago. 

The kind of power available in the home will also partly 
determine the machine purchased. Without doubt, the 
electrically operated machine of any type does quicker, 
more thorough work than the best type of hand machine 
possibly can do. In choosing an electric type see that the 


motor is located in a position where there is little danger 
of the motor becoming wet. Washers with enclosed gearing 
and simplicity of construction are to be preferred to those 
with belts which must be tightened ; open gearing, however, 
is dangerous to the operator. Although the best tubs of 
cedar give excellent service, the preference may be given 
to the tub of copper or nickel alloy, which is the most sani- 
tary and will give the longest service. 

Further, in choosing an electric washer, that style should 
be selected that has a reversible wringer and drain chutes. 
This makes it possible to wring the first load of clothes 
into a basket while the second load is being washed inde- 
pendently in the washer. There should be a "cut-off" on 
the wringer so that it can be stopped quickly if clothes are 
caught. Before purchasing an electric machine, the woman 
should be sure that she understands the operation of the 
motor, the care of the parts, and if possible, should use the 
machine under the guidance of a demonstrator before she 
purchases it. 

The water-motor operated machines are usually of the 
dolly type and require at least 20 Ibs. of water pressure at 
the faucet. The wringer cannot be run by water power. 
Such machines use 200 to 300 gallons of water an hour. 

"In selecting a hand-power type, the following points 
should be noted. Convenient height of washer, as machines 
are frequently placed too low and thus cause unnecessary 
stooping. Legs should be fitted with castors to permit easy 
moving from place to place and the washer should never 
be too heavy to move easily. Lever, wheel or handle should 
be long enough, and so placed as to allow work without 
strain or back bending. A satisfactory outlet for waste 
water should be provided other than the common "bung," 
which empties badly. 

It is much better to have even a hand power machine 



connected with a permanent drain, and with pipe and cock 
of its own so that the draining and filling will be easy. 
Hand washers, unconnected with drain or water pipes, re- 
quire so much "pailing" that their efficiency is greatly low- 
ered. A hose connection (at least i inch) from the water 
outlet to floor drain is almost always possible, as well as a 
hose from hot and cold water. A piece of brass or gal- 
vanized iron pipe with elbow and nipple in the end of the 
hose will hold the hose in place and direct the water where 
desired. There is no excuse for lifting any water in a 
laundry having running water. 

In addition to the four types given above there are many 
imall washing appliances. The vacuum principle is ap- 
plied to a cone mounted on a broom han- 
dle, which is useful for cleaning small rugs 
and sanitary cloths and baby napkins. An- 
other cone with perforations is made to set 
in the middle of the boiler and sprays the 
clothes after the manner of a coffee perco- 
lator. Several other modifications of the 
funnel type are fitted to set tubs or to be 
attached to the ordinary galvanized tub, but 
the writer is frank to say that any of these 
is useful only for washing a few small 
pieces at a time and cannot take the place 
of a regular, full-sized washing machine. There is also 
a cylinder washer which fits inside an ordinary set tub, 
but the capacity is less than that of a good machine. 


Even with a good washing machine, a boiler is necessary 
for the boiling of certain pieces, such as very soiled under- 
garments, children's diapers, etc. A boiler should be made 
with a copper bottom which will give longer wear and con- 

Ingram Vacuum 


duct heat more quickly. The ordinary lifting of a boiler 
to empty its contents can be entirely avoided by having a 
regular faucet soldered in the end of the boiler. (A faucet 
costs 75c, work about 5oc.) Then the water can easily 
be run off without danger and labor. Arrangements should 
be made for filling the boiler from a hose pipe or faucet. 


The boiler should always be well dried and aired after use. 


As laundry equipment represents often a very consid- 
erable money outlay, it should be given good care, that it 
may not deteriorate and its value lessen. Such pieces as 
mangle, washer and table should have specially made covers 
of ticking to keep them clean and dry. Irons also should 
be put into a closed closet or covered with vaseline if used 
but occasionally. Great care should be taken with electric 
irons and connecting cords for all devices, as if the cord is 
bent the insulation is impaired. A special clothes-pin bag 
and ironing-board cover bag made of ticking should be used 
to keep them clean. Washing tubs should be kept perfectly 
clean and left dried to avoid rotting. The motor should 
never be allowed to get damp. Care must be taken that 
the oil used on various parts is sufficiently wiped off so as 


not to soil the clothes. Wringer rolls must be unscrewed 
when not in use to avoid flattening them. All minor equip- 
ment, starch-pot, etc., should be left clean and laid away 
and not allowed to become rusty, as rust is one of the 
worst foes of the laundry. 


A good laundry should contain its own necessary small 
tools, like starch pot and spoon, quart measure, etc. Never 
use tin articles, as they rust. As described in the efficient 
laundry plan, these articles should be kept in a closed cup- 
board out of the way of dust and soil. Although the needs 
of each family vary owing to size, climate and standards of 
clothing, the following list of small laundry equipment will 
be found helpful in purchasing: 



Set tubs $ 5.50 to $ 15.00 

Washing machines : 

Dolly, hand 8.00 to 14.00 

Dolly, motor 35.00 to 75.00 

Cylinder, electric 85.00 to 150.00 

Cylinder, hand 8.00 to 15.00 

Oscillating, hand 12.00 to 20.00 

Oscillating, motor 95.oo to 150.00 

Vacuum, hand i.oo to 10.00 

Vacuum, motor 85.00 to 150.00 

Boiler, copper bottom % 2.00 to 5.00 

Boiler, copper bottom, with faucet i.oo extra 

Wringer, hand 3.00 to 6.00 

Wringer, power 14.00 

Clothes basket 1.50 up 

Small scrubbing brush for rubbing soiled spots 15 

4 to 6-quart agate Berlin kettle for starchmaking. . .40 



Long-handled agate spoon for starch $ .15 

Agate quart measure .25 

White soap, yellow soap 


Lump and pulverized starch 

Oxalic acid (2 ounces) 

Concentrated ammonia, i pt 

Washing soda, salt 

Wax or paraffine, turpentine ... 

Javelle water (made from chloride of lime, receipt 

on package) 

Glass medicine dropper 05 

Small agate funnel , 10 

Wire strainer for starch .10 

Galvanized iron pail 25 


Clothespins, per box of 200 .30 

Clothesline, white braided fiber, per 100 feet .40 

Umbrella clothes dryers, outdoor 8.00 to 2O.oc 

Folding umbrella clothes rack for ironing 1.50 

Built-to-order drying closet 50.00 up 

Overhead moveable clothes dryer 5.00 

Bottle stopper, aluminum sprinkler ;. .10 


Mangle 20.00 to 200.00 

Irons 50 to 4.50 

Iron holder .05 

Folding ironing stand and board 2.50 up 

Permanent metal standard and board 12.00 

Sleeve board .75 

Ironing board cover (home-made) 

Ironing board clamps or fasteners 25 

"BOILER-ROLLER" Very useful, especially in a country laundry; 
easily made from a stout box a little larger than a boiler bottom. 
Turn box upside down and nail legs, about 3x3 inches, securely in 
each corner; put on heavy castors. The table when completed 
should be just the height of the laundry stove. To use put end of 
roller close to stove and pull on the boiler, push to laundry tubs 
or washing machine. Also useful for holding basket of wet clothes 
and moving same to dry-room or elsewhere. Saves much lifting 



The work of washday will be greatly simplified by care- 
ful planning and preparation. On no other day is it so easy 
to get the house in confusion, to serve poor and hasty 
meals, and for the worker herself to become thoroughly 
tired out. In most homes the plan of a weekly washday must 
be followed. But if the supply of clothes is large enough, 
there is a great gain in having the washing done only on 
alternate weeks, as this gives one free week for sewing, 
special cleaning, etc. 

Let us suppose that all the washing of a family of four 
is to be done by the worker herself; only shirts and collars 
being sent to the commercial laundry. Plan the other days 
of the week so that the washing is done on Tuesday, con- 
trary to the time-honored custom. This permits the house 
to be given a good brushing-up after Sunday's confusion 
and the cooking of practically all of Tuesday's meals on 
Monday. It also gives opportunity for the thorough sort- 
ing and soaking of clothes and removing stains the day 
before, which is most inconvenient when done on Sunday. 
When the clothes are sorted they should (except stockings) 
be mended so that the washing will not make the rents 
larger, and to obviate the more common plan of mending 
the garment after it is freshly laundered, which has the dis- 
advantage of crushing the newly ironed article. Also it 
gives more time for the treatment of stains which, if left 
to the regular washday, are likely to be overlooked and 

The standard practice for any washday will differ some- 
what owing to whether a washing machine is present, the 
method of heating the water, etc., etc. 

Here follow five different "standard practices" for vari- 
ous conditions and methods. They may be modified or 


combined to suit your conditions. When you have deter- 
mined your "standard practice" it should be written down, 
with its "time schedule.'' 

Set Tubs. See Diagram, page 229.) 

Conditions: Two portable galvanized iron tubs with basin plugs 
and rubber stoppers on wash bench; hand washer; pump; washer 
mounted on stand higher than tubs, and connected with them by 
double galvanized iron drainboard. Wringer on washer between 
tubs and washer; lever of washer to extreme right. Stove and 
boiler used for heating washer. 

1. White clothes soaked in Tubs I and 2 over night (or for half 

an hour in warm water). 

2. Fill boiler from pump. 

3. Fill washer with boiling water from boiler, and add soap 


4. Drain Tub i and place Load i in washer; operate washer by 

hand ten minutes. 

5. Remove Load i and run through wringer back on to drainboard. 

6. Add more soap and boiling water to washer, refill boiler from 


7. Drain Tub 2, and place Load 2 in washer; operate by hand ten 


8. Remove Load 2 and run through wringer back on to drainboard. 

9. Drain soiled water from washer; refill with clean hot rinse 

10. Fill Tubs i and 2 with cold blue water; start starch preparation 

at stove, 
n. Fill washer with as much of Load i and Load 2 as possible; 

rinse in washer (by lever) about six minutes. 

12. Wring back on to drain, then put into blue water. 

13. Repeat Steps n and 12 with remaining clothes. 

14. Finish starch preparation and lay pot on drainboard. 

15. Wring clothes loosely from blue water by hand, and starch 

necessary ones on the drainboard (basket underneath). 

16. Hang up all white clothing. 

17. Repeat above steps for colored clothing, of which there will be 

probably only one load, hence shorter time. Do stockings sep- 
arately by hand in last soap water, and rinse in clear (never 
blue) water. 








CONDITIONS : Three stationary tubs ; motor operated washer with 
reversible power wringer and drain chutes; permanently installed 
hot and cold water and waste connections. 

1. Separate all white linen and clothing into two groups, Load A 

requiring boiling (sheets, cases, towels, etc.), and Load B 
requiring no boiling (tablecloth and napkins, centerpieces, 
scarfs, etc.). 

2. Cold soak over night, Load A in Tub i, Load B in Tub 2. 

3. Drain both loads from soiled water; place Load A in washer 

with hot water (softened) and soap solution; wash by motor 
15 minutes. 


4. Wring and deliver Load A 5. Add more soap solution and 

directly into boiler. Boil hot water to washer; fill 

not over 5 minutes after with Load B; wash 15 

water comes to a boil. minutes. 

Use this time to prepare clear warm water in Tub 3, blue water 
in Tubs 2 and i, and attend to boiler. 




10. Refill washer with clean hot 

water (softened). 

11. Remove Load A from boiler 

and place directly into 
washer of clean hot water. 
Rinse ip minutes by motor. 


6. Wring and deliver Load B 

on to drain chute. Empty 

7. Refill washer with clean hot 

water (softened). 

8. Refill washer with Load B. 

Rinse 10 minutes by motor. 

9. Wring and deliver Load B 

into Tub 3. Empty washer. 

14. Wring and deliver Load A 

into Tub 3; rinse by hand. 

15. Run through blue water. 

16. Run through power wringer 

into basket. Starch. Hang 

12. Rinse (by hand) Load B in 

Tub 3; then run through 
blue water in Tub 2. 

13. Reverse Load B from Tub i 

through power wringer into 
basket. Starch on Table 
T; process ended. (Hang 
put Load B before finish- 
ing with A.) 

Repeat steps with colored clothing according to practice for 
Load B ; no boiling. Add hot water and soap to rinse water in 
Step II. If only one load, drain the washing water off with 
the clothes in the machine ; run in warm rinsing water ; run 
the machine; drain and rinse in the machine with cold water 
twice ; wring and hang out. 

For Standard Practice No. 3. 



CONDITIONS: Three tubs in line with power washer, drain chutes, 
reversible wringer, Judd Rinsing Tray; machine next to Soaking 
Tub i ; Bluing Tub 2 in center ; Rinsing Tub 3 on the end ; 
boiler at same height with side close to end of Tub 3 ; Load A to 
be boiled, Loads B and C not boiled, Load D colored clothes. 

1. Soak Load A in Tub i, % to */2 hour, in softened warm water 

with half a bar of dissolved soap. 

2. While soaking Load A, oil machine, fill with hot water, soften; 

add i l / 2 bars of shaved soap or equivalent of chip soap 

3. Wring Load A from soaking water through power wringer into 

machine ; run 10 minutes to half an hour, till dean, 

4. While Load A is being washed, soak Load B in Tub i. Fill 

boiler, soften, start heating. 

5. Wring Load A out of machine on to Judd Rinsing Trav and 

slide into boiler of boiling water (no soap added). Bcii 5 to 
10 minutes. 

6. Wring Load B from soaking water into the machine ; add a little 

more soap if necessary and start washing. 
>". Start Load C soaking in Tub i. 

8. Take Load A from boiler to rinsing tray, let drain; slide load 
into warm (softened) rinsing water, Tub 3; rinse well; toss 
on to tray placed on Tub 2; swing tray and slide load into 
warm bluing water; take load over tray, placed on Soaking 
Tub i, through machine wringer into basket; hang, 
g. Run Load B, now washed, through power wringer on to Judd 
Rinsing Tray; slide tray to one side. 

10. Wring Load C from soaking water into machine ; add more soaj. 
and hot water and start washing. 

IT. Put Load D (colored clothes) into soaking water (fresh, if 

12. Rinse Load B from tray in Tub 3, a piece at a time, throwing 
on to unoccupied part of tray as fast as rinsed; slide into 
bluing water, Tub 2 ; wring over tray .through power wringer 
into basket; starch; hang. 

Repeat process No. 12 with Loads C and D, give second rinsing 
to Load D in place of bluing. With only two tubs, rinse and 
blue in the same tub. Rinsing is more thorough if done a 
piece or two at a time in the whole tub of water as directed. 
With the Judd Rinsing Tray, wringing between rinsing and 
bluing water is not necessary. 

The Judd Rinsing Tray can be used to advantage in any type of 
laundry; price $3.00, Judd Laundry Machine Co., Chicago. 




CONDITIONS : Two portable or stationary tubs ; hand power washer 
wringer; boiler (white clothes only). 

1. Soak clothing over night in cold (softened) water in Tubs l 

and 2 or for l / 2 hour in hot water. 

2. Fill boiler with cold soft water and bring to boiling point. 

3. Add to boiler Y-Z of the following mixture made previously : 

i Ib. bar yellow soap, shaved fine. 

i cup best quality white paraffine, shaved fine. 

i qt. boiling water. 

Melt together thoroughly. 

4. Drain clothes ; wring, and place Load A in boiler. 

5. Boil Load A Y 2 hour. 

6. Deliver Load A into washer of clear, very hot (softened) water. 

7. Refill boiler with Load B, adding another cup of paraffine mix- 

ture and boil y 2 hour. 

8. Rinse Load A in washer, by lever, about ten minutes. 

9. Fill Tub I with clear cold water, Tub 2 with blue water. 

10. Wring Load A into Tub i, then place into Tub 2; starch and 


11. Repeat steps Nos. 8, 9 and 10 with Load B or Loads C, D, etc., 

as there are about 5 boilerfuls in a large family wash of white 
clothing. Clothes which are not much soiled need not be 
soaked but may be put directly. 


CONDITIONS : Two stationary set tubs and water motor washer, with 
permanent drain and hot and cold water connections. No boiler ; 
hand wringer. 

1. Soak clothes (white) over night in softened cold water and 

naphtha soap solution. 

2. Fill washer with tepid water (softened) and naphtha soap 


3. Drain clothes from Tub I ; wring and fill Load A into washer ; 

operate washer 20 minutes. 


4. Empty washer; refill with clean tepid water; operate washer 10 


5. Empty washer; refill with clean cold water, and operate for a 

second rinse of 8 to 10 minutes. 

6. Fill Tub i with blue water. 

7. Wring and deliver Load A into blue water of Tub i. Starch and 


8. Repeat above steps with all following loads, including colored 


(This cold water and naphtha soap method needs no boiling if 
a motor washer is used which will give the long-time and 
strong friction and rinsing. This is the easiest of all methods 
for only moderately dirty clothes.) 


There are two naphtha soaps, the "white" and Fels- 
Naptha. The latter is much the stronger. Slice 4 bars of 
soap and place in a two-gallon jar of water. Allow to stand 
over night. Then beat up the soap with a strong egg beater 
to thoroughly dissolve. Add about 2 cups of this jelly to 
each washer of clothes. (Naphtha soap cannot be used 
with boiling water, hence the plan of beating the jelly until 
it is perfectly dissolved.) 


1. Avoid change in temperature either of water or drying or 


2. Wash and rinse in water of the same temperature, about 110 F. 

3. Use rain water, if possible. Soften both washing and rinsing 

water, if hard, with correct quantity of borax or ammonia 
and finish softening with a little soap solution before the 
goods are put in the water. Leave a little soap in the last 
rinsing water to give a soft finish, or add glycerine. 

4. Never rub soap directly on, but use soap solution of mild white 


5. "Squeeze" rather than rub, and avoid all possible twisting and 

stretching and rubbing. 

6. Handle quickly, "pat" into shape, and dry in warm room or out 

of doors in warm weather; freezing is harmful. 
Woolens may be washed in a washing machine but should be 
kept separate. 



Colors in fabrics may be either "heavy," as deep brown, 
blue, red, etc., or "delicate," as pale pink, lavender, green, 
blue, etc. The latter wash better than the former, which 
have more tendency to "bleed" or run; but all colored or 
parti-colored materials need to be washed with great care 
as even the best dyes are not always to be trusted. It is 
best to test a sample of the fabric with hot water and soap 
to see if it will "bleed." If the soapy water shows color, 
"set" the dye by soaking in salt solution, i l / 2 cups to a quart 
of water, for an hour or two, then dry. 

Again, articles are not generally made all of the same 
colored material but are composed of two or more materials 
and colors, i.e., a pink striped chambray dress with solid 
pink collar and cuff of linen ; or, overalls of blue denim 
with red straps, or a centerpiece of white linen embroidered 
in colored silk. Each kind of material absorbs the same 
color differently, hence the extreme care needed in wash- 
ing and also in the later drying and pressing under heat. 
Colors are affected by all the conditions of alkalis, acids, 
sunlight, soap and heat. 

But all colored materials can be washed under the same 
general rules, as follows: 


1. Set the color, if necessary, by soaking in salt solution. 

2. Avoid soaking usually. 

3. Wash in water about 110 F. ; never hot. 

4. Use mild white soap in solution, but avoid rubbing soap directly 

on material. 

5. Wash, rinse and dry quickly. 

6. Never boil; generally avoid bluing. 

7. Hang wrong side out away from sunlight, as shaded by a sheet or 

trees, etc. Sunshine and moisture fade nearly all colors. 

8. Iron on wrong side with cool iron, using muslin or where neces- 

sary to press on right side to avoid "shine". 



In many homes the washing of baby garments is a daily 
and time-taking task. A few words about it will not be 
amiss. First, a baby's clothes should never, for hygienic 
reasons, be mixed and washed with the family clothes. 
The bands, sox, shirts and petticoats of flannel can be 
washed as for above directions of woolens. The white 
dresses, unless very elaborate, need no starching, and only 
a good boiling each time. The diapers need especial care. 
The faeces should be at once removed, and the diaper placed 
in a metal covered pail, like a new garbage pail painted 
white, or a white enameled pail, until time for washing. If 
a few drops of Lysol solution are sprinkled in the pail it 
will remove odors. It has not been found a good plan, in 
the writer's experience, to soak the napkins that are washed 
every day as this makes the work more unpleasant. 

A small, stiff scrubbing brush should be used for further 
cleansing; then they may be placed in cold water, rubbed 
slightly, and then put on to boil in cold water without any 
chemical, merely white soap chips. Reserve for this use 
solely a galvanized or white enamel bucket holding 2 or 3 
gallons. Boil ten minutes after the water boils. Rinse 
in clear hot water and hang out. Never use bluing, as this 
yellows them and causes dangerous chafing on the tender 
skin. Although many small devices and washers are sold 
exclusively for baby use, none have proved practical or as 
simple as the boiling in the pail, as even with a washer 
they must be boiled in order to be strictly sanitary. Wash 
hands in alcohol after handling such articles. 


i Ib. soap chips to 6 gals, water added directly to the water in the 
machine, or i large cake soap to 2, l / 2 qts. water. Cut soap fine and 
melt over slow fire; do not cook after it is dissolved. 

Soften the water by adding the correct proportion of washing 
soda solution before adding soap. 



i large bar (i-lb., 2-oz. size) Ivory soap. 

4 qts. cold water. 

Cut soap fine, add to water and heat and dissolve. One-half cup 
wood alcohol can be also added to very soiled woolens. Use half 
of this in each of the two wash waters. Add i tablespoon glycerine 
to 2 qts. of the tepid rinse water to give a soft finish. 


i qt. water. 

3 tblsp. starch (corn). 

Yt tsp. each borax and paraffine or clean lard. 

Make a paste of some of the cold water and the starch to sep- 
arate the starch grains. Have the right amount of water boiling, 
and stir in the starch paste slowly, stirring well to avoid all lumping. 
Boil gently for about fifteen minutes, using an asbestos pad under 
to prevent scorching. This is a "heavy" starch; thinner quality is 
made by using less of the starch powder. 



i. Make a sketch of your present laundry. What changes 
would make it more step- and labor-saving? Is your 
present equipment "grouped" so that work can be 
easily "routed"? 

2 Make out a "standard practice" of your laundry work, 
stating what conditions you have to work with, i. e., 
washer, tubs, installation, etc. Do you consciously 
follow such a "practice" on wash days ? 

3. What is the chief reason why your present laundry work 

is hard? Please compare your experience in hand 
(washboard) rubbing and any washing machine you 
may have used. 

4. How large is your family washing (number of persons), 

and how many hours does it take to do it, both the 
washing and the ironing? 

5. Have you used motor-operated laundry equipment, and 

do you like to use machinery, or are you somewhat 
afraid of it ? Is it the first cost that prevents you from 
using more machinery? 



Showing rack for knives and shelf with holes over garbase can. where 
dishes are "scrapped," vegetables prepared, etc. 




"TV \ Y HUSBAND earns $200 a month ; we are five 
in the family. My husband pays the rent, the 
coal and his lodge, and I have a weekly allow- 
ance to run the house. I do all my own work, and yet 
have nothing saved. Do you think keeping accounts would 
help me? What do you mean by the 'budget' plan? Will 
you please help me get this money problem straightened out, 
and tell me how to manage better ?" 

This letter is typical of hundreds which have come to 
the author's desk, all asking some questions about the 
handling and disbursement of money in the home. "Effi- 
ciency" means not only prevention of waste energy in steps 
and labor, but prevention of waste in money and materials 
as well. Therefore no discussion of new methods in home 
management would be complete without seeing how they 
apply to that most important part of homebuilding the 
plans for income spending and saving, and the means of 
making those plans easy to follow. 

In former days there was less need for care in spending 
or accounting of money first because less actual money 
was handled. Even as late as 1890, 63.9% of the popula- 



tion was rural, and only 36.1% was urban. Today 53.7% 
is rural and 46.3% lives in cities. That is, twenty- five 
years ago 64% of all the families of the nation lived in the 
country and raised and manufactured the bulk of its prod- 
ucts, for which no money was paid. But today almost half, 
or over 46% of all families live in cities, and hence are not 
producers, but consumers who must buy and pay with 
money for the countless articles and foods that each home 

Therefore it was then not so important for the woman, 
or the wife and husband together, to follow some definite 
plan of expenditure. In this present age, too, there are 
also other urgent reasons why a family must have a con- 
scious plan of spending and saving. These reasons may 
be grouped as follows: 

1. Greater social demands and higher standards of 
taste and living generally. 

2. Longer periods before children become self-support- 
ing, due to modern insistence for education and child labor 

3. Each individual today adds a definite cash amount to 
family expense without so much chance to render back 
value as in the past. 

4. Men are considered economically "unfit" for work 
and are forced to "retire" from occupations at a much 
earlier age than formerly (i. e., the man of fifty today finds 
his place usurped by the young man, and many employers 
refuse to hire men over a certain age limit). 

5. Therefore parents have to provide more savings with 
which to support themselves during this lengthened period 
without work opportunity ; whereas in the past, when living 
was simple and rural, there were more kinds of unskilled 
labor at which even a very old person could "earn his 


6. Increased cost of maintenance in "the rainy days" 
and the higher cost of medical attendance and nursing in 

The health of the family, its education, its pleasures, its 
savings, are determined, not by the amount of that income, 
but by the distribution, or the spending of that income. 
Many families who today may complain of their low income 
are suffering frequently, not from a low income, but from 
mis-spending of that income. The whole standard of family 
living depends only on the apportionment or spending of 
what the family earns. Two families may, as often hap- 
pens, have identical incomes; yet one manages to own its 
own home and send its children to college, while the other 
will be always on the brink of debt and unable to afford 
its children advantages. To save, to diminish the expendi- 
ture, is just the same as having an increase in income. 


For the 18,000,000 families in the country today over 
nine billion dollars is spent annually, mainly by women. 
Women alone buy 48.4% of all merchandise for family use, 
and have an important voice in buying 23% more buying 
a total of 71% of all products used in the home. Further, 
women buy: 

48% of all drugs, 

96% of all dry goods, 

87% of all raw and market foods, 

48.5% of all hardware and house furnishings.* 

As most of this sum is spent without keeping records, 
the proved experience of business, men shows that there 

* Figures from Investigation by Prof. H. Hollingworth, of Columbia 
University, N. Y. City. 


must be an attendant waste of of least 3%, probably much 
more, which means that each year American women by 
slipshod spending waste at least one hundred million dollars ! 
How important it is, then, not only to each family, but to 
the nation, that some efficient plan of family spending and 
record keeping be followed. All too often homemakers com- 
plain that their work inside the walls of the home is "uninter- 
esting," and that it has not such "opportunities" as outside 
"business" affords. Young women who maintain this atti- 
tude of disparaging the possibilities in homemaking are fre- 
quently the very ones to devote their best intellect to keeping 
in order the accounts and books of a business firm. Why 
should not the same intelligence and care be given to the 
accounts and expenditures of the home which is the center 
for which all other businesses exist ? 


No other question is so important to the happiness of the 
home as the mutual understanding of finances by all mem- 
bers of the family. If only the wife makes the plans, it is 
difficult for her to impose them on the other members of 
the family. If the husband handles the money, doling out 
a niggardly sum to the wife, no large general plan of all 
expenditures and savings can be made. The ideals, stand- 
ards and plans must be shared equally by both husband 
and wife, and understood by the children, in order to have 
happy united "pulling" toward a definite aim. Again, if 
all are equally informed, and agree to the same plan, each 
will feel a responsibility in seeing that the "plan" is lived 
up to and carried out. Nothing draws a husband and wife 
closer together than a frank, businesslike cooperation about 
their finances to have a mutual aim to buy a piece of 
property, pay for a house, put away an educational savings 
fund, etc. 



\Vhile the plan of a personal or household "allowance" 
to the wife is often followed, the author is frank to say 
that it is, in her opinion, a relic of some past time when 
women were supposed to be too inexperienced to handle 
money, and to whom therefore it was "doled" out by the 
husband, who was always the financial support. These 
are the strong objections to the "allowance" plan as we see 
them : FIRST, it prevents the woman from seeing and under- 
standing more than her own petty allowance expenditures. 
In handling and having a voice only in this part of the 
income, she is bound to be inexperienced and fail to grasp 
the broad view of all the family finances which it is most 
important she should take. SECOND, it sometimes results 
in extravagance and onesided expenditure; because, satis- 
fied with her personal allowance and spending it all, per- 
haps selfishly, the woman loses sight of the other family 
needs, or does not realize that the personal allowance is an 
unfair proportion compared to all other items of family 
expense. THIRD, this plan seems to force a woman into the 
undignified necessity for begging or skimping for every 
penny she should have by right. FOURTH, the greatest criti- 
cism of all, the allozvance scheme* is unbusinesslike, and 
makes impossible the satisfactory carrying out of any uni- 
form "budget" plan of expenditures for the whole family. 

Housekeeping is a business ; husband and wife are equal 
partners. The entire income (from whatever sources) 
should be mutually shared and directed by both partners. 
Any other plan fails of self-respect, and cannot be called 
true business management. The allowance scheme, either 
for husband or wife, can only be compared to two partners 
in a commercial business (having a joint income of $200 
per month), one of whom gave to the other a small sum, 


say $20, and said to him, "Here, Brown, is an allowance 
for your cigars and neckties; don't worry your head over 
any other money matters, leave the management of the other 
$180 a month to me." We cannot imagine any two actual 
partners doing such an absurdity; nor can we imagine 
modern progressive husbands and wives dividing the re- 
sponsibility of their joint income in any similar silly way. 
"But don't you believe in a 'household' allowance?" many 
women will ask. If by "household allowance" is meant 
all items of family expense, we do; but as generally used 
by those who write the author for advice, and by other 
persons, "household" seems to refer only to food, clothing, 
and a few extra expenses, and is not used to include rent, 
savings, investments, education, and the really larger items 
of expense. For instance, one woman writes: "I have 
a household allowance of $20 a week to run the house on ; 
my husband pays the coal, rent and insurance. I buy my 
own and baby's clothes out of the house money," etc. This 
kind of "household allowance" plan lets the woman share 
in the spending of only a few items while the husband is 
entirely responsible for others. Such "household allow- 
ance" does not permit any carefully thought proportioning 
of expenses, one item to the other. Neither does it require 
both to share the responsibility for the spending of the 
whole income. The wife should share the responsibility 
for the financial success or failure of the family. And that 
is why such an "allowance" does not make for good man- 
agement or efficiency in family spending, for if she does not 
feel responsible she will not keep the accounts on which the 
"budget system" of spending depends. 


"I get $20 a week to run the house on," again repeats 
my friend of the above letter, "and I keep track of every 


penny I spend. My husband is economical, too, and yet 
we never know where we are at from one month to the 
other. Some months we save ; but the next month it seems 
as if we had to meet a big bill which leaves us 'in the hole/ 
And there always seems to be something unexpected turn- 
ing up to use up the little we do get ahead. I can show 
where every penny went, but I still don't seem to be able 
to manage " 

An inquiry into the details of the spending in this 
family, and a look at their "account book" showed this 
fact that they were economical to the extreme they 
noted every single penny and wrote down a record of it 
afterward; but they didn't in the least have any general 
planned-in-advance scheme of spending. They knew what 
they had spent; but they didn't know what they would 
spend. And so, while they were "careful" they just met 
bills as they came along, took out this sum or that as the 
need seemed to arise, and let their expenses master them, 
instead of mastering those expenses! When I wrote and 
asked this correspondent to tell me what her income was, 
what per cent of it she spent annually on food, on clothes, 
on amusements, on savings, on running her home, she 
didn't know, even with that carefully written account book 
before her! From all the hundred details, she had no 
large general percentages which would give the amount 
spent for one group of needs as contrasted with another, or 
which would be a guide to future spending. Thus, unfor- 
tunately, she had been "keeping accounts" largely to no 


The old-fashioned "accounts" is to keep track of what 
has been spent; the new-fashioned "accounts" is to plan 
what will be spent. That is, instead of one partner having 


an "allowance" for two or three items, or instead of either 
spending hit or miss, just as the need seems to arise, the 
new way is to make a spending plan in advance, to be car- 
ried out equally by both partners. 

This definite, well-thought-out plan of spending money 
in advance is called a "budget." This term is taken from 
the bag, or "budget," of financial estimates for the com- 
ing year laid before the British House of Commons by 
the Chancellor or Exchequer. It may be said that a 
"budget" is "spending on paper." Instead of taking an 
income, say $100 a month, and spending it just as each 
need seems to arise $30 for food one month, $20 the next, 
"squeezing" down the food some other month because the 
entire family needs winter clothing, etc., etc., the "budget" 
way is to plan, and particularly to apportion in advance how 
much can be spent for food, for clothing, and for all other 
needs throughout the entire year. Its view is annual, not 
monthly or daily. Its object is not so much skimping, 
economy or saving, as it is proportionate, balanced spending. 

City and national governments, every business worthy 
of the name, estimate their divisions of expenses for the 
coming year. "The annual budget," reads the daily news- 
paper, "for improvement this year in this state will be 

dollars, to be divided as follows between the 

counties," and then follows a detailed estimate 

of the exact proportion of money which can be spent on 
roads, bridges, harbors, etc., in that state for one year. The 
"budget" plan can be followed just as satisfactorily in the 
equally important spending of home finances how much 
shall we spend for food, how much for rent, how much for 
every need and want during the coming year? 

Although the needs and wants of any two families may 
differ widely, it has been found that the following general 
divisions cover those of all families : 



1. Shelter. Rent, or its equivalent in interest on investment if prop- 

erty is owned ; property taxes, fire and burglar insurance ; water 
tax; repair and upkeep of the house; railroad or carfare inci- 
dental to situaton of house, etc. 

2. Food. All meats, groceries, vegetables, dairy products, husband's 

or children's lunch, meals taken away from home. 

3. Clothing. All materials and articles of clothing, mending sup- 

plies, dressmaker or tailor, clothing repairs, pressing, etc. 

4. Operating. Light, heat, ice, telephone, wages of maid, laundress 

and service of all kinds ; house-furnishings, labor-saving devices. 

5. Savings. Payment on property, endowment or life insurance, 

bonds, savings account, etc., beneficiary society or lodge,' etc. 

6. Luxuries. Cigars, barber, hairdresser and similar personal lux- 

uries. All extra food, clothing, candy and other indulgences and 
amusements which are neither necessities nor advancement. 

7. Advancement. Education, music, books and periodicals; club 

dues, church, charity, gifts, recreation, vacations, health (phy- 
sician, dentist, medicine), postage, toilet articles, telegrams, etc. 


What per cent of any given income shall be spent on each 
of these seven divisions? There is no one universal answer, 
because the percentage to be spent in each case and for 
each family is determined by a number of different causes 
or conditions. Just as each state cannot blindly follow 
another state in making an annual ' 'budget" for improve- 
ment, but must base the per cent to be spent on the number, 
location and peculiar needs of its own roads, harbors, etc., 
so the "budget" for each family is influenced by many fac- 
tors, chief of them being the following six : 

I. The temperament, taste, and especially the "goal" or aim to which 
the family is striving. 


2. The climate and place where the family is located (city, country, 

temperate, cold, etc.). 

3. The social or professional standing of the group to which the 

family belongs or with which it wishes to be classed (artisan, 
doctor, farmer, clerk, etc.). 

4. The proximity or remoteness to markets and other sources of 


5. The number of persons in the family, and their age. 

6. The amount of the annual income (this includes not only the 

sum earned by the father, but money earned by the children 
and mother, or received from investments, or the equivalent of 
a garden, stock, gifts, fees and other sources of revenue). 


What is called a "statistical family" consist of two adults 
and three children under fourteen years of age (actually, 
4.6 persons). For greater convenience and uniformity, all 
theoretical budgets prepared by experts, or those budgets 
based on actual concrete family experience, are estimated 
on the basis of this theoretical family. But if your family 
is not the "statistical" one, but contains besides a grand- 
mother, or has three children over fourteen instead of 
under that age, allowances for increased expenditures will 
have to be made in modeling your budget after the "typical" 
one from which you are trying to get help. 

Now, as said before, no one family can adopt and follow 
the "budget" worked out by another family in exact detail ;, 
because no two families are identical, owing to the variations 
made by the six main causes of difference listed above 
goal, climate, number, income, etc. All that a "typical" or 
"model" budget can do is to act as a guide or pattern which 
you may follow in outlining your own budget. It is as if 
you were going to make a new dress from a pattern as 


nearly fitting as possible, but in which you would have to 
allow extra fullness at the hips, or more pleats in the back, 
or take in a few darts at the waist to suit your particular 

Again, it is a serious mistake for persons about to make 
out a "budget" to base it chiefly on income. No budget 
can be determined by your income, but by what you want 
your family to get out of that income. Before you plan 
any budget at all, you must think what objects and aims 
your family wishes to realize, what values you count high- 
est, and therefore put first. Because the Smiths have $200 
a month, and your income is also $200 a month, is no reason 
you must spend the same percentage for each item that the 
Smiths do. This point is emphasized because the author 
has all too frequently found correspondents blindly copying 
the per cent spent by some other family with the same 
income. Each "budget" must be a law unto its own family. 


You recall that the first "efficiency principle" given and 
discusssed in the first chapter of Household Engineering 
was the point of "ideals." "What are we running the 
home for? What is the goal of this business of home- 
making? What do we wish most to secure from life for 
ourselves and our family? This question of "ideals" or 
goal must be definitely ansvvered before any budget can be 
satisfactorily worked out. The aim, and taste, and striving, 
of a given family must determine the working budget which 
tbey are going to follow. Otherwise it would be just as 
if a ship were to start on a voyage without a port toward 
which to sail. The budget is to the family what a charted 
course is to the navigator with a settled harbor in view and 
definite sailing directions to guide. 


Where do you wish to sail ? What port does your family 
wish to make ? Is it saving to send the children to college, 
or money spent to increase your husband's business, or 
more aesthetic richness in your life, or opportunity to do 
more good to the community? Let us repeat that a clear 
idea of the goal (or there may be several) toward which a 
particular family strives, is the first essential of budget 
'making. On this choice depends the apportionment of all 
the seven divisions given above. 

Before discussing several "typical" budgets, and how we 
can get help from them in developing our own, let us see 
exactly why it is not safe or wise to blindly follow the 
budgets of other people, or those regarded as "typical." 
Suppose two families have the same income of $100 a 
month. One, Wheeler, lives in California, where the climate 
is warm and food prices low. The other, Mr. Morehouse, 
lives in an eastern suburb, with a rigorous winter, at a long 
haul from the metropolis to which it is a satellite. In one 
family the three children are aged 2, 4 and 6, and the mother 
has a helper in the home ; in the other family the children 
are 8, il and 13, and the mother and children do all the 
housework. The father of the California family is a skilled 
employe of a railroad; the father in the eastern family is 
a teacher in the high school, anxious to attain a better posi- 

Although both of these families are the "statistical" 
family of two adults and three children under 14 years of 
age, it will be seen instantly how different the per cent 
each must spend for the seven divisions of their income. 
In the first case, we will suppose that Wheeler, of Cali- 
fornia, has no great ambition or chance to ever earn much 
more in his occupation than $100 a month. On the other 
hand, Mr. Morehouse is willing to spend his evenings on 
study and courses which will enable him a few years later 


to take a small college position. He wants his children, 
too, to have the best education. This goal alone possibly 
determines that a large per cent of Mr. Morehouse's $100 
monthly shall go to his children's educational fund, to 
books and expenses while he attends courses at a nearby 

Again, food in the locality being cheap, and the Wheeler 
children being small, a less per cent will need^to be spent 
for food in that family than in Mr. Morehouse's, where 
he has to feed three older children, and pay the long haul 
plus the city price for all his food supplies. Further, Mrs. 
Wheeler feels she cannot get along without help when her 
children are so small, so she has a helper who costs about 
$4 a week, while the Morehouse children are themselves old 
enough to assist their mother in the housework before and 
after school. In addition, Mr. Morehouse, being a school 
teacher, has to dress fairly well and live in a good district, 
while Wheeler, who is working in a railroad office, can 
wear less expensive or work clothes, and lives in a section 
where rents are low. Also, Mr. Morehouse is expected and 
wishes to assist certain "causes" he has the dues from 
various societies to which he must belong, certain school 
and social expenses which, being a teacher, he must meet. 
Mr. Wheeler's reading comprises the daily newspapers and 
his obligations are optional. 

The "budgets" of these two families would therefore 
differ widely, even though they had the same income and 
the same number of children, principally because they 
wanted to do different things and achieve different results. 
The author has given these two opposing cases in this 
detail to illustrate the point that a budget must not be 
based blindly on "typical" budgets or the experiences of 
others, no matter how excellent or helpful they may be. 
The budget of each family, as said before, must stand or 


fall alone, and be based exactly on what that particular 
family wants to achieve most out of its life. 

All that other budgets can do is to suggest the appor- 
tionment of a given income for a given number of persons. 
It has always been a source of disagreement for the author 
to hear other authorities say, "Given $100 a month, then 
$25 a month must be spent for food;" or, "If the annual 
income is $^,000, then 20% must be spent for clothes," 
etc., etc. From the two contrasts given above, it will be 
readily seen that differing families have different needs. 


From thousands of actual budgets studied by experts 
a number of helpful generalizations have been deduced. 
For instance: 

1. The lower the annual income, the higher the per cent 

that will have to be spent on food. Conversely 

2. The higher the annual income, the lower the per cent 

necessary to be spent on food. (Example on an 
income of $1,200, 40 per cent must be spent to main- 
tain family in health, while on an income of $6,000 
only 16 per cent will need to be spent on food.) 

3. The lower the income, the less per cent that can be 

spent for savings, luxuries and advancement. Con- 

4. The higher the income, the greater the per cent that 

can be spent on these three divisions. 


5. The per cent to be spent on the four divisions, food, 

advancement, luxuries and savings varies with the 
size of the income. 

6. The per cent to be spent 'On the three divisions, rent, 

operating and clothing remains more nearly fixed, 
whatever the income. 


The amount spent for shelter should be determined by 
convenience of the house, its nearness to business or school, 
and its sanitary and healthful situation. Too frequently 
rent is based on a mistaken social pride. Many families 
spend on rent a sum out of proportion to the other divisions 
in their budget. A family may rent an elaborate house for 
their children's sake an expense which may not be justi- 
fied, as the children might be just as well and happy in a 
smaller, less pretentious house. Or a young couple want to 
"keep up appearances" by living in a fashionable neigh- 
borhood, when they should be putting more in their own 
pockets and less in the landlord's. 

If "shelter" includes heat, this extra sum will be balanced 
by lower operating expense. Distance from school or busi- 
ness must be figured, as rightly all transportation costs must 
be considered a part of "shelter." If the house has a yard 
and there are children, the additional expense of the yard 
may be offset by decreased need for a nursemaid, as the 
yard will enable children to take care of themselves. Again, 
the size and style of a house greatly affect the item of 
"operating," a point too little considered. The number of 
windows, the amount of service time and labor needed to 
clean the rooms, the fuel to heat it, the upkeep of lawn, 
etc., will either increase or keep normal the "operating" 
item. Even a supposedly "low" rent for a roomy old- 
fashioned house may be "high" if the fuel and additional 


upkeep are considered. Shelter, then, must not be con- 
sidered without "operating," and even some of the other 
divisions; for instance, if too large a per cent is spent on 
"shelter," certainly less can be spent on advancement, 
savings, etc., which would be of more permanent value. 

Whether to rent or own is a big question to be only de- 
termined by the individual family, the location and the 
profession and permanency of the work of the father. If 
the home is owned, the amount of investment that it repre- 
sents should be divided monthly, and entered under "shel- 
ter" in the budget. For instance, if house and land repre- 
sent an outlay of $5,000, then 6% of this sum annually will 
be $300, the amount that $5,000 would bring at normal inter- 
est. To this $300 should be added taxes, insurance and 
repairs. The sum divided by 12 will give about $30, or the 
monthly rent of which the house is the equivalent. This 
amount of $30 a month should be entered in the budget. 
Many times a family, such as minister or supervisor of a 
farm, has the rent or parsonage free. This approximate 
value must be set down in the budget, otherwise there will 
be wrong estimating, such as has been found in many budgets 
handed the author for inspection. That is, if the income of 
a country minister is $1,200, and "parsonage free," his ac- 
tual income is equivalent to $1,500, basing rent of parson- 
age at $25 a month. The budget would then be made out, 
not on a $1,200, but on a $1,500 income. 


The per cent necessary to keep the statistical family in 
good health has been approximately figured for average city 
prices as at least $587 per year, or about 35 cents per day 
per person. If there is a garden, the equivalent of this 
should be credited in the budget as added to the regular 
income. A large garden will represent about $100 to $150 


a year, especially if canned products raised in it is included. 
If there is one place where good management shows, it 
is in this item of food. The skill and training of the 
homemaker in nutritive values and cooking will bear greatly 
on this point, and one woman may feed her family for two- 
thirds or even one-half of another. However, the amount 
of food should never be stinted, especially with growing 
children. But the amount of money spent gives little indi- 
cation of the nutritive value obtained. Low doctor's fees 
are an indication of right nourishment and if there is no 
sickness, one may be sure the food supply is being cared 
for properly. 


The percentage spent here will depend on size and style of 
house, the standards and taste of the family. The cost of a 
maid or other service by the day, plus the cost of the maid's 
food, must be charged in "operating." Some make a mis- 
take when they write "We have three in family, and a 
maid," and then estimate the percentage of food on three, 
and leave the maid out of calculation. The kind of heat, 
its control, the kind of furnishings, etc., will all affect this 
item. Many "skimp" on this division, and put an excess 
on clothes or other item. As much labor-saving equipment 
should be bought and counted here as possible. Laundry, 
or laundry equipment, linens, furnishings and their repair, 
and all upkeep are included in this item. Simple furnish- 
ings, modest houses and good equipment can do a great 
deal to reduce expenses in this group. 


While under this heading have been given payments on 
property, etc., there are other kinds of savings which may 
be entered as such by some families. Vacations, travel, 


continued expense at one's profession may be a kind of 
potential savings which will be realized later in increased 
strength or efficiency. Many families make the error of 
thinking that "savings" must always be concrete cash. The 
line between savings and advancement is slight, and many 
items under both divisions may be interchangeable. In- 
stead of putting money in the bank, one young doctor ex- 
pended it on further training so that he would become a 
specialist a personal savings for the future when his in- 
vestment in himself would be justified by the returns in a 
larger income. 

In a similar sense, children can be looked on as "savings" 
or investment, and not as an expense. Healthy, efficient 
children represent a sentimental investment to their indi- 
vidual families ; they are also the greatest social investment 
which can be made by the state and nation. We are just 
beginning to take this view as a community, that better 
babies, more sturdy and intelligent children, are investments 
to society. We are rinding out that a state can "save" in 
no better way than by encouraging such conditions and 
investing money in such work as will produce the highest 
types of children. 

In other words, some families fail to invest in them- 
selves, so. that they will be able to do more important work, 
be more socially valuable, etc., but instead concentrate 
wrongfully on the kind of savings which are only repre- 
sented by a bank book and which are often mistakenly 
made at the expense of present comforts, or even necessi- 
ties sufficient food and adequate standards. 

The immigrant, who on his farm at a pitiable wage, went 
back to the old country with $2,000 in his pocket after four 
years, may have saved but at the price of personal growth 
and value to the community. 

The couple without children, that has never given equiva- 


lent in service to the community, but that has instead 
amassed commercial savings, has certainly lived by the 
letter and not the spirit of this meaning. 


The list of these items is long, and the decision as to 
which are luxury and which are not, must be determined 
honestly by the individuals. Autos may be advancement, or 
the equivalent of transportation, but frequently are pure 
luxuries. Personal services like those pertaining to the 
toilet, flowers, gifts and numbers of expenses can be justi- 
fied on no other ground than the head of "luxury." 


This division seems clear enough, except that many cor- 
respondents and others fail to see the connection between 
health and this division. The care bestowed upon the fam- 
ily's teeth, eyes and health, all items for sanitary use, mark 
the difference between the family with a low standard and 
one with a higher view. All spiritual needs, all educational 
expense, or the means of increasing knowledge, training, 
development or the making of the members more efficient 
to themselves and to society, must be classed here. 


"How shall we class the expenses of our children ?" write 
some. It is just as easy to estimate their food, clothing and 
education as that of the adult. Roughly, the following have 
been estimated as the cost of children for different ages, 
omitting the birth expenses, which vary most widely : 

Child 3- 6 years $150 annual cost, without nurse or attendant 

6-8 " 175 
" 10-12 " 225 
" 14-16 " $300 $500 in school, not at work. 



But two children do not double the cost of one. The 
same equipment will do for two or several, and the same 
fuel and time to cook for two as one. Also, older children 
can be taught to help the younger, and thus lessen any 
"operating" expense of the first child, which might have 
needed a nurse. 

The coming of children is often used as the occasion to 
raise the whole standard of living, moving to a larger house 
and employing extra help, when, by applying more efficient 
household plans, and reducing the elaborateness of the home, 
this expense could be easily avoided. Fuel, laundry and 
doctor's fees usually increase the budget when there are 
small children. 


Standard or ideal budgets are of little value except in 
giving averages from which to vary according to circum- 
stances, as already suggested. In this big country with 
widely different conditions and prices, it is difficult in ordi- 
nary times to give average figures and percentages, but with 

From Report No. 54, National Industrial Conference Board, New York. 


such violent fluctuations of prices as the past few years 
have shown, this becomes increasingly difficult. 

The diagram gives some idea of the rise and drop in 
prices from July, 1914, to July, 1922. The price levels of 
July, 1913, are taken as the pre-war standard there was 
little change in 1914. These standard prices are higher 
than those of former years. For example, the average cost 
of food in 1897, tne l w point f r some years previous, 
was about 65 on the 1913 basis of 100; by 1907 food prices 
had gone up to 82 and in 1911 to 92. In general, prices and 
the cost of living are now 2/5 to 2/3 higher than pre-war 
levels. It is probable that succeeding years will show a 
downward trend, although it may be many years before 
pre-war price levels are reached, if ever. 

The diagram is based on average expenditures in city wage earners' 
families, pre-war standards, as follows: Food, 43.1%; Shelter, 
17.7% ; Clothing, 13.2% ; Fuel and Light, 5.6% ; Sundries (Advance- 
ment and Luxuries), 20.4%. These percentages are quite different 
from the suggested budgets following and consequently the diagram 
only in a general way represents the increased cost of living for 
families with other standards. 

(Statistical family of two adults and three children under 14 years). 

Monthly ment and 
Income Food Shelter Operating Clothing Savings Luxuries 

$100 40%-$40 23%-$23 10%-$10 14%-$14 5%-$ 5 8%-$ 8 

150 30%- 45 23%- 35 13%- 19 14%- 21 10%- 15 10%- 15 

200.:. 25%- 50 22%- 44 13%- 26 15%- 30 12%- 24 12%- 24 

300 20%- 60 22%- 66 14%- 42 15%- 45 15%- 45 15%- 45 

400 18%- 72 20%- 80 15%- 60 15%- 60 12%- 48 20%- 80 

500 16%- 80 20%-100 15%- 75 18%- 90 11%- 55 20%-100 

The above figures represent averages for small cities and towns, family 
living in a house or cottage. In large cities in heated apartments, the rent 
would be more, operating less. The food allowances are low, and, to be safe, 
would require knowledge of food values, with expert purchasing and man- 
agement. Monthly allowances are 4 1/3 times weekly allowances. 

As indicated in the text, few families are "statistical" and for figuring 
actual family budgets the best procedure is to subtract the fixed expenses 
from total income and apportion the balance according to experience. See 
tables in "The Art of Spending" (lOc) and "How the Budget Families Save 
and Have" (5c). Am. School of Home Economics, Chicago. 



Once this "budget" or estimate is made, it must be fol- 
lowed, and some system kept which will keep record of the 
expenses and see if the actual budget conforms to the 
theoretical budget. The author's chief objection to most 
"systems" of keeping household expenses, is their elaborate- 
ness, which would prevent the busy housemother from 
having time to keep them correct and up-to-date. 

In order to follow out the budget plan, we will have to 
use some of the knowledge and terms of regular bookkeep- 
ing. But the system should be as simple as possible, the 
idea being not to make a bookkeeper out of the homemaker, 
but to permit her to have the most accurate record and 
also the best "short-cut" method to serve her purpose. 

There are two separate methods of keeping a budget or 
any other form of household account. One is by means of 
a book, or set of books, and the other by means of a set of 
cards. The book plan is the simplest for a beginner. It 
is a proved fact that American women, as opposed to those 
in England and France, know little about keeping accounts, 
or records of money. In those and other foreign countries 
this is made a part of the education of girls an ideal to be 
striven for here. 

All transactions have two sides ; each person is always in 
the joint position of debtor and creditor. This makes 
every account of expense have two sides, the debit and 
the credit ; we are debtor to the cash account for all the 
money or income received. This cash account must include 
not only salary of father, but money earned by other mem- 
bers of family, or through investment and the equivalent 
of garden, free rent, etc. The credit account will include 
all sums paid out for every item of the budget. 

Now, to make this very easy to keep track of, let us rule 


a large blank book about 10x8 in. Let us use two pages for 
each month, and divide both pages into similar columns, 
about twenty in number. Write days of the month in the 
first column, and in the second write all the cash receipts, 
or amount to our deposit in the bank. Continue to the right, 
and label each column for each item of the budget (see 
illustration), keeping items of one group, as "food" (gro- 
ceries, meats, vegetables, etc.) together and connecting them 
over the top with a bracket labeled with the main division 
of the budget. That is, there will be seven main divisions 
divided into about twenty columns straight across both 

The extreme right column is for "total daily balance." 
At the foot of each column is ample space for the total of 
each column and also for other figures. We will suppose 
that we are paying bills both by check and by cash. We 
will have a check book, and draw on it from the monthly 
sum deposited there to our credit which we think will be 
enough to pay the bills we desire to pay by check, as monthly 
butcher and grocer, light, etc. We will keep all sales checks 
or slips, and use them as a basis of the sum entered in its 
proper credit column. In this account book only the gen- 
eral total sum spent is entered to save space and time, 
i. e., instead of writing under "Vegetables cabbage, .10; 
carrots, .20, apples .40," we will write the total, "Vege- 
tables .70," as that is sufficient for accuracy and too much 
detail is complicating. If there are details that we do wish 
to preserve a record of, they may be kept separate in a small 
book which corresponds to the "day-book" in business. It 
may be said in passing, that the household account book 
now being described for use with the budget plan of ex- 
pense, is what in bookkeeping or business would be called 
a "journal-ledger," in which both receipts and expenditures 
can be seen at a glance. 























ft ^ jg^^s 






,r /~,*r x- 




























/ 00 



SHELTEK - jb .23- " 
- -iL/. 

T*aoE> Jt>^aif 




Now let us begin to keep the accounts of January or the 
new year accounts. Let us suppose that we had a bank bal- 
ance of $50, and $7.50 in cash from December. The first 
column would be as per illustration. Now as we pay cash 
for meat, groceries or what not, we merely enter the total 
sum in its proper column. We also pay other weekly bills 
by check. If so, we will write the sum under its proper 
column, and note on our check stub the firm to whom paid, 
the date and number of check. Every week it will 
take us perhaps forty-five minutes or less to "balance the 
book." To do this we add the figures of the daily expense 
and place in total weekly expense column. Supposing the 
total amount spent, according to your account book, is $27. 
Your check book shows a total of $24 paid by check. That 
would mean you had paid out the difference between $27 
and $24 in cash, or $3. You began the week with $7.50 in 
cash and spent $3 in cash. Therefore your purse should 
contain $4.50. It takes longer to explain this than to actually 


28 9 























C ^ 










do it. In many cases a monthly balancing would be suffi- 
cient. At the end of the month total each of the 20 columns 
under the seven large divisions given above. We may find 
that the total sum spent in some one division is beyond our 
budget allowance. For example, "operating" in January 
may run away beyond the $14 per month limited by our 
budget. But if we look over the operating column carefully 
we may find that the bill for the winter's coal has been paid 
in January and thus brought up operating expenses. But 
as this is a cost to be distributed over several months, we 
will find that we have really not exceeded our appropriation. 

Perhaps, however, we find that our food bills have been 
exceedingly large, and upon close scrutiny we see that we 
really have been extravagant in supplies. So we promise 
ourselves to "hold down" food expenses in February and 
keep within our budget. 

In the back of the account book should be a record of 
the budget as planned for the first of the year. At the end 
of the year the totals of each of the seven divisions should 
be copied in the back alongside of the estimated totals for 






Published by Am. School of Home Economics, 64 pages, cloth bound, 
Price $1.00, postpaid. 

quick comparison. This will be a simple kind of "balance 
sheet" and the failure or success in living up to the budget 
can be seen. The budget of this year will be nothing more 
or less than information for future spending next year. In- 
deed, no budget is perfect the first year. It takes some 
time to make one which will be smooth running and adjust 
automatically to the increased demands on it of constantly 
growing older children, etc., etc. But it is only by having 
some basis, some first budget, that future ones can be made 
more nearly perfect. 


This plan is a little more complex, or at least more diffi- 
cult for the beginner to handle. Instead of a book we use 
4x6-inch ruled cards, which can be bought at stationer's or 
of office supply stores for about 75c or $1.00 per thousand. 
In addition, there will be needed about 20 cards with a 
special tab on the top called "guide cards." In this plan 
one card will take the place of one column in the book. The 
number of cards to be used will vary with the subdivisions 
or needs of each particular family. The author has found 
the following plan with twenty cards satisfactory for an 
average family: 



MATERIALS NEEDED : Guide cards with tabs, of stiff cardboard, size 
4x6 inches ; 250 plain ruled 4x6 inch cards ; small cloth or wooden 
box with cover to fit cards. (These can be bought for about 5oc.) 

Rule twenty of the plain cards, like the "Groceries" card 
illustrated. Write in the upper left-hand corner of each 
card the subject, or division of the budget, as follows (from 
i to 20) : 








,,, r fi8. 




Rent, railroad and carfare 
Taxes, fire and burglar insurance 

Dairy products 
Fruit and vegetables 
Meat and fish 
Meals outside 

Bought garments 

Dress materials and supplies 

Tailor and dressmaker 

Fuel and light 
Furnishing and repairs 
Service and laundry 
Telephone and ice 

Life insurance, real estate, beneficiary so- 
cieties, bonds, etc. 
Cash in bank 

Gifts, candy, toilet articles, vacation and 

Education and periodicals 
Church, music, theatre 
Physicians, dentist, medicines 

These twenty divisions or cards seem to cover the needs 
of an average family, but special cards can be made out for 
Garden, Automobile or Buggy, Chickens, or for each mem- 


her of the family if it is desired to keep separate records 
for each of the children. 

Arrange all twenty cards under their proper guide card, 
as from I to 5 under Food, 1 1 to 14 under Operating, etc., 
and place upright in their box. As a purchase is made 
simply write the total amount, on its proper date, on its 
proper card. Each of the cards contains room to enter 
the total spent on any one item for every day in the month, 
with a space at the bottom to write the monthly total 
"Groceries, $12.46," or "Fuel and Light, $4.60." 

In addition, prepare a recapitulation card (see illustra- 
tion), on which to enter the sum total spent on each division 
of the budget for the entire year. 

This one card alone, then, will at a glance show exactly 
the total spent on all the divisions of the budget, and can 
be compared and used as a basis for succeeding budgets, 
just as the simple "balance sheet" was used with the book 


It is surprising how few housekeepers use a checking sys- 
tem to pay household bills. A checking account will be 
helpful in either the book or the card plan. It is much the 
best to pay as few bills by cash as possible, and to keep 
little cash around the house. The monthly sum which it is 
estimated will cover all bills payable by check can be de- 
posited in a local bank, where it is safe, and where it may 
even get a low interest. Every check stub is a receipt in 
itself, and thus is one good means of "keeping track" of 
what has been spent. In business, the word "voucher" is 
used to mean "any document which bears witness to the 
truth of a statement made in the credit side" (of the ac- 
count book) ; now, either a receipted bill or sale slip is a 
voucher when signed by the person to whom the money is 






Carried fwd. 



Carried fwd 

















































Month's Total 







Expenses, Income & Savings 

























paid; or the endorsed check paid to a person is also a 
voucher. These endorsed checks come back from the bank 
the first of the month, and should be kept as receipts that 
bills have been paid. It is a good plan to keep receipts of 
every kind at least one year, and important ones even 







1 i'.O t 

.01 \^-|t 






TO . 


ro AM.<^.rv^\ ^..^A 





. eJR. 



3- SO 





The end of October record and beginning of November record shown: 
column at left 'gives total spent, the seven columns at the right, "where 
the money goes." The (2) in the first item indicates Wife's Clothing 
according to the "Key"; the (4) in the last item Child B Clothing. Note 
distribution of this cash item. 

It is a much better business to pay a four weeks' bill to 
the home office by one check than to have the interruption 
of paying a collector at the door four times a week. The 
less money handled, the fewer mistakes and the more busi- 
ness-like the account can be. Efficiency in keeping money 
is judged by the small amount of cash carried in the home- 
maker's own purse. Indeed, the simplest and surest method 
of keeping a record of family expenditures is to deposit in 
the bank all money received and check it out for all ex- 
penses even for "petty cash." 



Recently this bank accounting system has been perfected 
by the invention of the "Self-Accounting Check Books" 
which have been adopted by many progressive banks. 

In the new check book are bound special interleaves hav- 
ing classified columns as shown in the illustration. The 
same classification as recommended in Household Engineer- 
ing is used, with an additional column headed Personal 
Personal Allowances. When writing the checks the amount 
is entered in the column at the left and in the proper classi- 
fied column or columns. Simple addition at the end of the 
month gives the total expenditures for the month and the 
total in each division. No other accounts need be kept, 
though if desired the small "Weekly Allowance Book" may 
be carried in the pocket book for recording personal 

The reverse side of the interleaves provide for a classi- 
fied record of receipts. A table at the bottom of this page 
is intended for sub-division of expenditures under the main 
divisions. The "key" in the "Directions" suggests sub-divi- 
sions which may be kept ; for example, under Clothing: (i) 
Man's Clothing, (2) Wife's Clothing, (3) Child A Cloth- 
ing, etc.; under Food: (i) Groceries, (2) Meats, etc., (3) 
Fruits and Vegetables, (4) Milk, Cream, Butter; (5) Out- 
side Meals. These sub-divisions may be varied at will and 
kept or not as desired. 

When the small sized checks are used, the new check 
book is of very convenient size, 7 inches wide by 8^/2 inches 
long. It contains 300 checks as usually made up, sufficient 
to last most families for about a year. If your bank has 
not adopted this system, for a small sum you can obtain 
a set of the special interleaves with Directions, table for 
Yearly Summary and table for drawing up the family bud- 
get. Your local bank can then have the new check book 


made up for you, or may obtain the record sheets bound 
together and use checks from pocket check book "fillers," 
keeping the records in the bound "Check Record." * 

This new system overcomes the bug-bear of household 
accounts which, it must be confessed, are somewhat diffi- 
cult, and require much persistence. The Self -Accounting 
Check Book is really no more difficult to keep correctly than 
an ordinary check. book. Best of all it can be kept easily 
from month to month and year to year so that it makes 
the family budget a thoroughly practical program. 

Further description and suggestions on division of in- 
come, etc., are given in the booklet, The Art of Spending, 
How to Live Better and Save More. 

Frequently letters come from those who say that the 
budget plan is practical for those with steady incomes, but 
not for the doctor, lawyer, or others who receive irregular 
incomes. A plan for such families is to establish at once 
a "reserve fund" or "pool" in the bank which will carry 
them and run current expenses. For instance, a dentist 
may receive $150 in fees one month, $300 the following, 
and so on, or $2,400 the whole year. The way to make up 
a budget in such a case is to make a monthly average of the 
total income for the previous year and base the budget on 
that. Another method is to use an "Office Accounting 
Check Book" for the business and send a "salary," say $200 
a month, to the "Household Accounting Check Book" 
account for detailed budget recording. 


But records of family expenditures are not the only facts 
or data which every homemaker should be able to put her 

* "Self- Accounting Check Record" Household or Office, 76 pp. $1.00; 
"Weekly Allowance Book," 10 cents; "The Art of Spending," 10 cents. 
Am. School of Home Economics. Drexel Ave. at 58th St., Chicago. 


fingers on instantly. Is there any other "business" outside 
the home which has more different kinds of information, 
papers and bills to keep track of ? While many women are 
orderly and most careful in this regard, it is true that 
countless other women managing homes spend untold hours 
of energy hunting, pulling out and searching for this or 
that paper or information when it is suddenly needed. 

Now, it is just as inefficient to waste energy looking for 
a recipe to give a friend, or for the month-be fore's gas 
bill, or for a set of heavy underwear, as it is to allow 
"waste motion" in the kitchen or in cleaning tasks. Just 
as we have shown the need of a definite system or routing 
of cooking and other tasks to save time and effort, so there 
is equal need of a definite system or plan of keeping in one 
easily accessible place the different information which the 
housekeeper is constantly using. Some woman may say, 
"Oh, but I do keep addresses in a book and have recipes 
pasted in my cook book, and put clippings into envelopes." 
The fault with these plans is their lack of uniformity, and 
the fact that separate books and envelopes are just as likely 
to be "lost" or mislaid as the important facts they contain ! 

Another thing is that the quantity of information is con- 
stantly growing in proportion to the family's expansion ; 
therefore some plan must be followed which will not only 
keep all information together, but allow for future increase 
for a number of years. 

Now, after several years' struggle with separate books, 
"pigeonholes" in a desk, and other common means of keep- 
ing household records convenient, the author has, for a 
number of years, successfully followed an adaptation of 
the "filing system" used in every modern library and office, 
and which is only a step beyond the method of keeping 
accounts described above. 



The basis of this plan is again the 4x6-inch filing and 
guide cards spoken of in connection with the system of 
keeping household accounts above. It is so simple, inex- 
pensive and satisfactory that it is worth a six months' trial 
by every housekeeper. Its advantages are: 


1. It keeps all records and data in one readily accessible 

2. It is expansive, so it can grow with the family's needs. 

3. It is uniform, thus doing away with separate books 
and papers. 

4. Changes or mistakes can be rectified with a minimum 
of trouble. 

5. It cannot be "lost," but is easily available to every 
member of the family. 



MATERIALS NEEDED: 6x4 filing cards (about 500); guide cards 
with tabs, about 60; small cloth or wooden box; 2 sets "alphabet" 
guide cards. (The 5x3 in. cards may be used and are cheaper, but tht 
larger cards are somewhat better.) 


First, decide what are the subjects or "heads" under 
which you need or which you want to keep information. 
These will naturally differ with each person or family, some 
having certain interests on which they want to keep infor- 
mation, others different ones. The following outline is 
given only as suggestion which will apply to all average 
families, and additional headings can easily be added. In 
the writer's own plan the twenty-eight cards for household 
accounts are kept in the same box with the household file 
and is therefore included here : 




i. HOUSEHOLD ACCOUNTS (as given and subdivided above) 


(a) Social 

(b) Commercial 

(c) Special 




(a) Physician 

(b) Dentist 

(c) Oculist 

(a) Family sizes 

(b) Clothes storage 

(c) Sheets, bedding, linen 

(d) Supplies and pantry 

(e) Gift and occasion 

(f) Housefurnishings costs 

(g) Repair dates 

(h) Special supply firm addresses (stove 
dealers, home equipment, manufac- 
turers, etc.) 

(a) Fiction 

(b) Poetry 

(c) Reference 

(d) Books to read or buy 

(e) Music list (sheet, pianola, victrola) 

(f) Music to buy 


(a) Taxes, real estate 

(b) Document record 

(c) Bank records 

(d) Income 

(e) Bills receivable 

(f) Bills payable 

(g) Personal financial accounts 
(h) Organization dues, etc. 



(a) Baby care and hygiene 

(b) Garden and plant care 

(c) Toilet suggestions 

(d) Entertainment, games, party, etc. 

(e) Jokes, stories, etc. 


(a) Silver and jewelry 

(b) Furniture 

(c) Clothing 

(d) Furnishings and miscellaneous 


Arrange the two sets of "alphabet" guide cards in their 
proper order. Use one card for each name, writing the 
surname first and given name last, and the address on a 
lower separate line ; use balance of space to write other 
points to be remembered, as : 

Walker, Mrs. Susan J. 

1409 Emery Av., 
Springfield, 111. 

(Pres. Club for Business Girls) 
Mem. Gen'l Fed. Women's Clubs 
(Interested in hotels for working women) 

J. J. Boch & Co., 
10 Barclay St., 
New York City. 

Cut glass, imported china and novelties 
(Repair broken china, ivory and shell articles reason- 
able price) 



Use a separate card for each member of the family. This 
is an especially helpful division where there are children, 
and where the schools require specific information ; it also 
assists physicians by giving them a statement of the child's 
past health, as: 

David, born Sept. i8th, 1908 

Adenoids removed Feb., 1912 
Vaccinated Sept., 1914 (see certificate, V-receipts) 
Chickenpox, March, 1915; eyes examined May, 
1915; very farsighted glasses for close work. 

The "Dentist" card may contain the date and cost of 
fillings, etc. The "Oculist" card should give date of eye 
examination, and prescription of glasses if they be used. 


The first group here is that of family sizes (a) ; this 
means a card for each member of the family, giving all 
sizes, so that the cards may be slipped into the shopping 
bag and used as a guide. How many times one has seen a 
"bargain" in men's shirts which could not be bought be- 
cause we did not "remember" whether the neck size was 
14 or 15^2 ! The card for one child gives sizes of under- 
wear, suspender waist, stockings, shoes, neck measure. 


While many women carefully wrap and' tag articles of 
clothing to be laid away, not always is there a written de- 
scription of the place where they can be found. Useless 
"rummaging" and energy follow a vain search to locate a 



sweater, etc., when the need comes unexpectedly. After 
tying and labeling each bundle, any plan may be used of 
writing on the card, as "Full dress shirts and mufflers hall 
window seat ;" "children's summer nighties right lower of 

cedar chest." 


While marking linen in embroidered initials is decorative, 
there should be some plan of more practical use to assist 
the housekeeper to know how many and how long her linen 
lasts. A simple plan is to write the date of purchase on 
the sheet, together with some distinguishing letter, and the 
sheet number. For instance, if there are three sizes of 
sheets used, let A be used on wide sheets, B on narrow 
ones, and C on crib or baby sheets. Letter each sheet of 
its class, A- 1, A-2, B-2, B-3, etc. The following written 
carefully on the lower hem of a sheet with indelible ink, 
C-5, 1913, means that this is one of the crib sheets bought 
in 1913. The date of purchase is valuable because it gives 
a basis on which to figure how long that quality at a given 
price wore. The letter is a means of accuracy in making 
out the laundry list. On the card itself should be written 
the cost, size and firm from which bought, if a really accu- 
rate account is desired. If a sheet has worn badly, why 
purchase the same grade and price of the same concern? 
Only a card record of this kind will give the facts for 
future purchasing. 


The card with pantry supplies gives a list of the stock 
articles used in a particular home, the sizes of the cans, 
and the cost. For instance, one of the items reads, "Pine- 
apple, No. 2.y 2 can, contains eight slices, cost .16;" it is 
used as a basis in quick ordering, because it contains the 
exact kinds and styles of products used. It has saved time 


over and over again in making out orders of quantity 
grocery supplies. A duplicate card of canned goods par- 
ticularly can be made out and hung in the kitchen. Then, 
as a can of peas or peaches is used, it should be crossed 
off the list, so that at a glance the number of cans on hand 
of any particular product can be seen without poking around 
the storage and actually counting the cans. 

A card stating the article received or given as gift is 
often a help at holidays or occasions. The card of house 
furnishing costs contains such items as the cost of painting 
the porch and entry; the price of bed pillows for a given 
size and weight; the cost of garden tools, etc., or any cost 
which will in future be a guide in buying. This point is 
emphasized over and over, because it has been noted that 
much unnecessary time is wasted making new estimates and 
measures because no one can "lay hands on'* the ones made 
previously. Too much time is devoted to shopping, in the 
writer's opinion, because there is no accurate record of pre- 
vious costs. This is one of the places where industrial 
efficiency is most marked, as all costs are most carefully 
kept for instant reference. 

The other subdivisions of the file can be understood 
easily. The object of financial records (6) is to give, in 
concise form, a statement of all money, property and val- 
uables which the family possesses. Then, in case of unex- 
pected death, say of the head of the family, a record would 
be had at home of the various investments and matters, the 
valuable papers of which should be in a safety vault out of 
the house. Too many times a suddenly bereaved family 
has not the least idea of the condition of affairs in which 
the father has left it, and only long legal search discovers 
it. The inventory (8) is necessary so that in case of fire, 
or burglary, a record can be had of the actual belongings 
and furnishings. Such a permanent inventory is the basis 


of house, fire and burglar insurance. Other divisions can 
be made at will. The best point about this household 
filing plan is that it. expands exactly as one wishes. One 
small box may do to begin ; a larger one can easily be added 
when necessary. If desired, a more permanent wooden 
drawer can be used, with a wire rod down its center, on 
which to fasten the cards, so they cannot be lost or taken 
away. The writer, who began five years ago with a small 
box, has now four drawers of cards for household and 
professional use. 

If a card should be incorrect, or when new facts need to 
be added, all that is necessary is to write a new card to 
replace the old one. The card plan becomes an easy 
"habit," and anyone who has tried it long enough has be- 
come enthusiastic over its ease, compactness and quality of 
being in one place. As laid out by Mr. Harrington Emer- 
son, it will be remembered that "immmediate, reliable and 
accurate records" is one of the chief principles of efficiency. 
Even many a housekeeper who now keeps "accurate" rec- 
ords has not them so arranged that they are "immediate" 
to get at or read; the system of household filing suggested 
above will, more than anything else we know, or have seen 
tried, help the housekeeper to keep all her important house- 
hold information "immediate, reliable and accurate." 


One more department of housewifely knowledge was 
omitted from the above discussion, and that was, all infor- 
mation relating to cooking, recipes and household practice, 
because it seems better to discuss it separately. But here 
again is another great interest of the housekeeper recipes 
and cooking methods. How shall she arrange it all? The 
usual cookbook contains much that is only reference ; again, 
the interested cook is always clipping new recipes from 


periodicals, and exchanging them with her friends. What 
shall she do with this new material which is supplementary 
to the regular cookbook? Again, the usual way of laying 
a cookbook on the table and following the recipe results in 
spattered and soiled pages, as well as being difficult to 
follow, as it lies below the eye level. All these faults are 
remedied by making a cardfile recipe cabinet, as follows : 

Card File Recipe Cabinet 

MATERIALS : 6x4 cards (about 500) ; 20-30 guide cards. 
Write on each guide card the divisions into which you 

prefer to classify your recipes. Following is a practical 

arrangement, arranged alphabetically: 

1. Beverages 15. Game, poultry 

2. Breads, yeast 16. Jelly, preserves, canning 

3. Breads, quick raising 17. Lunchbox 

4. Cocktails, fruit, shellfish, etc. 18. Macaroni, rice, curries 

5. Beans, peas, lentils 19. Meats 

6. Cakes and icings (a) Beef 

7. Candies (b) Brains, sweetbreads 

8. Cheese, rarebits (c) Mutton, lamb 

9. Desserts (d) Pork 

(a) Without eggs (e) Veal 

(b) With eggs 20. Menus 

(c) Cake 21. Pastry picnics 

(d) Fruit 22. Pickles and catsups 

(e) Pudding 23. Potatoes 

(f) Frozen 24. Salads and dressings 

10. Eggs, omelets 25. Sauces 

11. Fish, salt 26. Sherbets and punches 

12. Fish, fresh, shellfish 27. Soups 

13. Fruit, fresh, stewed 28. Vegetables 

14. Fritters, waffles, pancakes 

Special cards may be made up giving, Unusually Success- 
ful Dinners, Children's Dishes, Formal Luncheons, After- 
noon Tea, etc., etc. Another classification might be accord- 
ing to the qualities of the foods, as "Proteins," "Starches/* 


etc. Other cards might be, "meat substitutes," "fireless 
recipes," "milk dishes," "invalid dishes," etc., etc. Five 
points should be covered with each recipe: 

1. Approximate cost 

2. How many does it serve? 

3. How long to prepare? 

4. How long to cook? 

5. Nutritive value 

This file of recipes should not be kept with the other 
cards in the household file, but in a separate small box in 
the cabinet, or over the kitchen table. Or the cards may be 
placed in a sliding drawer to pull out under the shelf. A 
piece of glass the same size as the cards can be built into the 
front of the drawer. All these cards should be punched 
with a small hole in the center upper edge. Then a small 
hook should be screwed in the shelf at about eye level, and 
as a card is taken from the box, it is to be hung on the hook, 
where it can be easily seen and read. The newest guide 
cards for this file have celluloid tabs so that they will not 
soil or become bent with constant thumbing. 

The receipted bills themselves are of course too bulky to 
be placed in the card file box. What is called a "vertical 
letter file" is excellent of this purpose. This is a pasteboard 
box, with envelope partitions, numbered alphabetically. It 
is an easy matter to have this file stand upright on one's 
desk, and quickly slip into it receipted gas bills under "G," 
butcher on "B," etc. 


Sometimes much of the material the housekeeper wishes 

to keep is in the form of clippings on this or that favorite 

topic.. These can be handled best in a series of large 

envelopes such as are used in libraries and commercial 


offices. Each envelope measures about 8x12 (they come in 
different sizes). To use them, place them upright (opening 
at back). Paste a label in the upper right-hand corner. 
Decide on the different divisions or subjects you wish to 
make, as "Women and Civic Work," "Club Programs and 
Study," "Montessori and Child Training," "Furniture and 

Letter File, Postcard File, Manila Envelope, Recipe File. 

House Decoration," etc. The following method of labelling 
them is the author's own adaptation of the "Dewey Decimal 
System" and is so simple and helpful that it can be applied 
to any set of household clippings, or those for other uses. 
Decide on the main subject on which you wish to collect 
clippings and information. Call this envelope No. i. Al- 
low ten envelopes to this one subject. Decide on another 
general head, call this envelope 10, and allow ten envelopes 
to this group. The third envelope of the general subject 
will be 20, the fourth 30, and so on. The plan works out 
as follows: 


ENVELOPE No. i Food clippings 

. 2 Menus for special occasions 
3 Food for children 
4 Lunchbox plans 
5-9 to be added later 
ENVELOPE No. 10 Child education 
ii Prenatal care 
12 Nursery devices 
13-19 to be added later 
ENVELOPE No. 20 Club programs 
21 Music 

22-29 to be added later 
ENVELOPE No. 30 Fashions 

31-39 to be added later 

The "key" to the whole plan is to allow ten envelopes to 
each subject, whether they are in use or not. This brings 
the number of each general subject ten and multiples of ten, 
so that grouping is very easy. If one wishes to carry the 
plan to full completion, use a set of 3x5 cards in connection 
with the envelopes, and "index" the cards by subject to 
correspond with the numbering on the envelopes. That is, 
if envelope I is "Foods," and envelope 50 is "Garden and 
Sprays," the cards to correspond will have a large guide 
card, stating: 

Foods No. i 

(with nine separate cards each with its subject behind it) 

Garden and Sprays No. 50 

(with its nine cards behind it). 

It is thus possible, by looking through the card file first, 
to locate instantly a clipping on a given subject. The plan 
may sound complicated, but it would not take more than an 
hour to label and arrange both envelopes and cards, and it 
will be a permanent way to quickly and systematically file 
all kinds of clippings, recipes, booklets and others which 
come with many household furnishings. 



Now, after we have described these plans and the way 
to keep all houshold records "immediate, reliable and accu- 
rate" by means of a filing system, the author hears some 
women instantly look up from reading the chapter and 
remark, "Well, that may be efficient all right, but it sounds 
too long and difficult for me to try. I don't have the time 


to write all that stuff on cards, and keep such a plan going. 
I'll have to stick to the old-fashioned way." Now, dear 
reader, do not condemn any plan until you have given it 
a fair trial. Second, the author wants to say, emphatically, 
that even if you don't use any such system you are taking 
time "to keep track of things," even in your present old- 
fashioned way. Think of the hours you spent "hunting" 
for an important address which you must have imme- 
diately. Think what an amount of energy you waste run- 
ning around the house for a commercial receipt that you 
are "sure you paid," when the collector calls for his bill. 
Think how you take the time of the family asking them 


"Where is this?" or "Did you see Mama's or 

that?" Or, "I'm so sorry, I've hunted just everywhere and 
thought I had it all tucked away in my desk, but I can't 
find it," etc., etc. 

Now, the author doesn't claim that any filing system 
needs no time, but that it at least doesn't take any more 
time than any present hap-hasard method, and that its 
results are 80 per cent more efficient. 
The time you spend hunting and 
searching and asking and "getting 
flustered," etc., could be spent equally 
well in sitting down calmly and writ- 
ing on a card information which will 
save you a "fluster" next time. It 
would not take as long to write on a 
card that the painter charged $5 for 
painting the porch last spring than it 
would this year to try and remember, 
and make a telephone call or write 
for a new estimate this season when 
the porch needs to be repainted. If 
housekeeping is to be a "business," 

then the least we can do is to follow the business practices 
in caring for money and information on which the success- 
ful management of the home depends. 


A small device used in many offices is equally helpful in 
the home. This is called the "index visible," and the author 
has adapted it in several ways. It consists of about fifty 
3x5 cards, with a special cut on the lower edge which per- 
mits the cards to slide up and down a thin metal hanger. 
Only the top edge of each card is visible, but other ma- 
terial may be written on the body of the card. Cards can 



instantly be slipped out and changed. It can be used excel- 
lently for: 

Telephone list (with alphabetical cards) 

List of phonograph records 

List of linen closet 

List of appointments 

List of standard house supplies and other subjects 

One thing that contributes to being businesslike is to 
have the right "business" atmosphere. There should be 
some kind of "office" in every home, where the above files 
and papers, etc., can be permanently arranged. A writing 
desk is not so good as a flat-topped table, such as even a 
stained kitchen table in the corner of some room. If the 
homemaker does her own work, some convenient kitchen 
shelf and drawer would be excellent. Just as the busy 
executive needs a place where he can have his papers and 
materials untouched, so the homemaker needs an "office" 
corner, no matter how humble, where she can go to plan 
her menus, write out her orders and make up her accounts. 
A few shelves over such a table, to hold her reference 
cook books, government and state bulletins and other pub- 
lications on homemaking would all tend to increase her 
system and pride in the "business" end of homemaking. 


Family Financing and Record Keeping 

1. With what system of family financeering are you most 

familiar ? What are its advantages ? What its defects ? 

2. Give the budget of your own family as nearly as you can. 


3. What system of household accounts seems best to you? 

4. Household records do you keep any? Is it advisable? 

5. Can you arrange for a "Business Corner"? 


* 2 . 3 8 S 

ii m 

1 I 

S o 

s ? 

2 'I 

U I 





EVERY large business and factory recognizes that 
the purchasing of its supplies and equipment is one 
of its most important and responsible departments. 
Therefore we find business firms employing persons called 
"purchasing agents," who are trained, informed on market 
conditions, and able to buy to the best advantage for their 
particular firms. Such "agents" enable their firms to save 
many thousands of dollars which otherwise might have 
been wasted in misguided or poorly planned purchasing. 
The woman in the home must occupy a similar position as 
the "purchasing agent" of the family, because in her hands 
lies the spending of the family funds. She must therefore 
know exactly what the family has to spend, what it wishes 
to spend for according to its prearranged "goal" or aims, 
when is the best time to buy, and what she should pay. In 
other words, every woman running the business of home- 
making must train herself to become an efficient "purchas- 
ing agent" for her particular firm or family, by study, watch- 
fulness, and practice. 

The first basis of efficient purchasing is to plan the spend- 
ing according to the budget plan given in the previous chap- 
ter. Definite amounts of the income must be set aside and 
known in advance for food, clothing, replacement, etc. These 
amounts must be known not only for the week, or the month, 


but for the whole year, or otherwise no systematic buying, 
no economies, or truly wise investment-buying can be prac- 
ticed. Unless purchasing is so planned, then the home 
"purchasing agent" will not be able to take advantage of 
the right seasons for buying, or be able to buy in quantity, 
or find money enough set aside when the time comes to 
purchase. The larger the income, the more easy it is to waste 
and spend haphazardly. And with the increasingly high 
cost of all living, still greater responsibility is placed on the 
home "purchasing agent" to buy on a small or moderate 
income, the necessities of food, clothing and furnishing, and 
still have left enough money to supply the family's needs 
of education and advancement. 

Never before in the history of the family have the burdens 
of purchasing been placed so heavily on woman's shoulders. 
This is because today the modern woman is chiefly a con- 
sumer, and not a producer. The housewife of a century ago 
made soap and candles, wove and fashioned all of the gar- 
ments, and with her own hands produced not only food for 
daily use, but also "jarred" and dried fruits and vegetables, 
and preserved meats for winter use. Today even the good 
housekeeper finds it profitable to buy many articles prepared 
in a "food factory," some clothing that is "ready made," 
and to avail herself of countless articles which make for 
comfort and sanitation which are produced commercially. 

It might at first seem that by being able to buy the article 
instead of having to make it, that the modern consumer is 
at once relieved of all responsibility. Some women take 
this view, but it is a mistake. Because, in letting go the work 
of her own hands she is instead faced with entirely new 
responsibilities. When food, garments, or other articles 
were formerly made in the old-fashioned home, the woman 
herself determined by personal supervision, that the quality, 
purity, and cleanliness of these articles produced under her 


roof, were of the highest. Just so, she today must (person- 
ally or collectively), assure herself of equal standards of 
purity and sanitation in these articles wherever they are 
made in factory, shop, or mill. In other words, some of 
the time saved by having these articles manufactured outside 
the home must be taken by the housekeeper in learning to 
understand how to buy commercially made products. What 
standards to demand, what price to pay, what adulterants 
to avoid, are some of the things which must be learned in 
order to become a trained consumer, or a responsible "pur- 
chasing agent" for the family. 

To become a trained consumer is therefore one of the 
most important demands made on the housekeeper of today f 
because, whether she is conscious of it or not, the woman in 
the home does the bulk of the family purchasing. The fig- 
ures in the last chapter will bear repeating : 

Women buy 96% of all dry goods, 87% of raw and mar- 
ket products, 48.5% of hardware and housefurnishings, 48% 
of drugs, 11.2% of men's clothing. The broad conclusion 
is that women alone buy 48.4% of all merchandise for family 
use, and help in selecting 23% more, thus buying practically 
71% of all the products used in the home. How essential, 
therefore, that with this great responsibility placed on her, 
she teaches herself to become a wise, trained consumer, 
equipped with knowledge and warned against pitfalls and 
inefficient buying methods. If she does not train herself, 
this large percent, representing annually billions of dollars, 
will be spent for waste and not value. Her family will suf- 
fer ; or the husband will be compelled to increase his income 
with no corresponding saving ; or he may, indeed, be forced 
himself to take up the burden of the family purchasing agent, 
thus overtaxing his time and strength and taking the time 
needed to make his own business a success. 

Still further, women, by failing to understand how to buy 


in the most efficient manner, are frequently responsible for 
many of the evils or high costs present in our modern 
selling methods. The women blame the retailer or the manu- 
facturer, whereas, it can be proved clearly in several in- 
stances that the blame should be laid directly at their own 
door. By undue use of the "charge account," by excessive 
delivery demands, the "return goods" habit (by vagaries in 
buying and other errors, women make the cost of doing busi- 
ness higher than necessary. Also it may be said here, 
that every woman should be a trained consumer, whether 
she has a family (i. e., husband and children) or not. The 
waste of inefficient buying of independent unmarried women 
creates just as much disorder as does the poorly planned 
buying of the homemaker, particularly as the former, hav- 
ing frequently only themselves to support, are inclined to 
even greater carelessness in their buying habits. 

Increased skill in buying will come, like every other kind 
of proficiency, only from continuous trying, from experi- 
ment, and study. Any woman (or man) can become a 
trained consumer, if they consciously train themselves : 

i By knowing that efficient buying is based not only on price, but 
also on considerations of value] quality, wear, future invest- 

2 By knowing the merits of various kinds of distribution methods, 
as parcel post, mail-order, co-operative buying, public market, 

3 By knowing the nutritive values of food. 

4 By knowing and co-operating in the enforcement of state and 
national laws governing the standards and handling of raw and 
manufactured products. 

5 By knowing existing weights and measure laws and checking up 
weights in the home kitchen. 

6 By knowing adulterants found in products and malpractice 
among dealers. 

7 By knowing how to identify manufactured products, their trade- 
marks, labels, advertising, sizes of cans, etc. 


8 By knowing the manufacture and qualities of various textiles. 
9 By personal experiment and test, keeping definite records of 

results in all purchasing. 
I0 By co-operation with organized consumers, as housewives' and 

consumer leagues, boards of health, etc. 


The first lesson in all efficient buying is to distinguish 
between price and value, and to learn to make all purchases 
on a basis of value, and not on price alone. Prices may fluc- 
tuate because of economic conditions, but the value of an 
article can be fixed only in the consumer's mind. Value is 
the "long-distance," investment view which considers many 
factors and results in wise expenditure. For instance, a 
comfortably upholstered Morris chair at $20 would give 
more value than a brocaded gilt settee at $50. Or, a lunch- 
cloth of excellent linen, with scalloped edges, which cost 
$8.00 that can be used every day, would give more value 
than an elaborate one of Madeira embroidery costing twice 
that amount, but so fragile that it can be used only once 
or twice a year. Again, a house is valuable as a residence 
in proportion as it offers sunshine, dry cellar, reliable plumb- 
ing, and satisfactory heating, and not in proportion to the 
details of finishing and decoration of the exterior or the 
interior. The price of the second house, however, might be 
double that of the first, but the former is more valuable if it 
gives greater comfort and health to the family. Or, a small 
talking machine, which all the family could use, at $20 would 
probably give more value than a piano at $400 if no member 
were a musician. 

The point of value versus price applies to all branches of 
expenditure. A simple recreation plan for the family, alive 
and interesting, such as camping, may have value far and 
above the actual money expended. Sight-seeing trips to city, 


factory or mine, which cost only carfare, may prove more 
interesting and valuable than ten times that sum spent at the 
theaters. Or, Mrs. B. may be willing to pay two cents more 
for a loaf of bread wrapped in paraffin paper, a cent more a 
pound for butter protected by a carton, because she believes 
the additional value of the increased sanitary handling is 
worth it. If price only were her basis, she would buy the 
cheaper loaf, and the bulk butter. A conception of value 
is of the utmost importance, for value is always greater than 
price and must control price in the consumer's mind in order 
to have efficient purchasing. 


"Distribution" is the term which covers handling, or 
means of getting products from the grower or manufacturer 
who raises or makes them, into the hands of the consumer 
who uses them. This handling cost must, of course, be 
added to the actual production cost of the article and paid by 
the consumer. The price paid for eggs in a city store, or for 
shoes or a suit of clothes, includes not only the price paid 
to the farmer or manufacturer, but also includes the fee 
charged by a respective chain of commission men, whole- 
salers and retailers, for packing, handling, and bringing the 
article to a location or store conveniently near the consumer. 
In other words, "distribution" includes the service of bring- 
ing an article from a distant territory, or factory, so that it 
can be easily placed at the disposal of the buyer, thus saving 
her time, effort and personal handling. In the case of manu- 
factured articles, particularly, the cost of distribution in- 
cludes the risk taken by each one of the distributors that the 
consumer will actually buy this product ; i. e., the manufac- 
turer who makes women's suits, let us say, sells the suit to a 
wholesaler or jobber, who then assumes the risk or chance 


that he can sell this suit to the retailer; next, the retailer 
accepts the risk that he can sell the suit to the woman in his 
town, and that she will like to buy it, so that he will not have 
it on his hands. This risk is added to the cost of distribution, 
as is also the cost of storage, which, in the case of some prod- 
ucts, is very high. 

There is nothing wrong with the theory of the consumer 
paying for this delivery, service, and convenience ; it is only 
that in many cases distribution costs have been excessive, 
due to no regulation or control by law. This has been particu- 
larly true in the case of the commission houses, that have 
been exposed, and proved guilty of such offenses as steaming 
potatoes in order to hold up the price, buying up orchards 
and dumping the fruit, etc., etc. The remedy here is not to 
do away entirely with the central wholesale place of ex- 
change which the commission house offers, and which is 
absolutely necessary for the retailer and consumer in a large 
city, but to regulate such centers by law. Some such regu- 
lation, after the manner of public service commissions, state 
industrial commissions, etc., with uniform laws and mini- 
mum distribution charges, should be enforced by each com- 
munity in the interests of both consumer and producer. 

In most cases where the consumer evades the distribution 
cost, she herself must take some of the time and effort of dis- 
tribution, which in the former case she avoided, but for 
which she paid. For instance, prices are universally lower 
in a public market than in a retail store. However, the 
market necessitates that the consumer take her own two 
hours of time walking a long distance, or, perhaps, paying 
carfare, and carry her packages home herself. In many 
cases it will be a real saving to do this ; in many other cases 
the convenience and delivery of the neighborhood retailer 
will be worth the additional cost. Similarly, while the "cata- 
log" house in a large center may save some money, it gives no 


service, the consumer cannot see the goods before she buys, 
and in most cases she must pay the delivery cost. 


I A manufacturer is the original source of production of a product 
made in factory, mill, mine, etc. A producer or grower is the 
original source of production of farm or livestock products. A 
manufacturer sells to both jobbers and retailers. A producer sells 
generally only to commission houses. 

2 A jobber buys manufactured articles from the manufacturer and 
sells to the retailer, but never manufactures himself. 

3 A commission merchant, or "house" is a jobber in food products 
who buys from the grower and in turn sells to the retailer. 

4 A retailer buys from either manufacturer, jobber, or commission 
merchant, and sells to the consumer. 

The consumer may try to break through these links in the 
chain of distribution, and in some cases be successful, as 
with the parcel post, which is a direct means of selling be- 
tween the producer and the consumer, or by the mail-order 
house, which is a jobber. But it must be said emphatically 
that the retailer has a genuine place to fill, and service to give 
in every community. Even if the parcel post were far more 
universal and satisfactory than it is at present, such a system 
would not be satisfactory for all consumers in large centers. 
All buying cannot be done at public markets, or from out-of- 
town mail-order houses, owing to distance, time involved, etc. 
In other words, no matter how we may save money once in a 
while on buying a suit by mail, or going six miles to a market, 
or having eggs sent direct by parcel post, we need the retailer 
to give us service in providing necessities and perishables 
fruit, milk, butter, bread, elastic ; we need the retailer to 
mend our sudden plumbing leaks, to supply us with arnica 
and toothpaste, to let us quickly get another eggbeater, or 
badly needed shoes and stockings. 


We may be able to save money on buying the large, antici- 
pated, occasional purchase, like a rug, or a suit, from a mail- 
order house or manufacturer direct. But it is only on such 
occasional, almost luxury-purchases that the retailer makes 
his profit, since he makes almost none on selling us the 
necessities. Therefore, unless we do buy from him the 
luxuries or occasional purchases on which his profit is larger, 
he may not be able to remain in business, and we will no 
longer receive the convenience, delivery and service on the 
daily necessities. 

There are many inefficient retailers, and often the cost 
of doing retail business is far too high. In many places there 
are too many retailers. On the other hand, the woman con- 
sumer herself is actually to blame for much of the excessive 
costs of retail selling. How many of us run up charge ac- 
counts, which increase the cost of doing business over 5% ? 
How many of us ask our grocer to send the boy over with 
a yeast-cake and a loaf of bread, or demand as many as six 
daily deliveries? How many of us fail to pay our bills, or 
are guilty of the telephone habit, the C. O. D. habit, or the 
"returned goods" evil all of which can be shown to increase 
the retailer's cost of business unfairly. One delivery per 
day in a store makes the delivery service only about 5%, 
whereas many deliveries increase it to as much as 13%. 
The grocery store which does a "cash" business has a cost of 
about 14% of doing business, whereas the store which "car- 
ries" customers must pay nearly 20%. Similarly in all retail 
lines, delivery, bad debts and inefficiency on the part of the 
consumer increase the cost back to herself. 

The first thing is to reform herself, and insist that the 
retailer carry out these reforms with her. For instance, 
induce the retailer to make one price if goods are delivered, 
and another if the customer carries them home herself. This 
has been done in a large bakery, which, for example, asks 


ii cents per doz for rolls sent home, but only 10 cents if 
they are taken. A large milk company has announced that 
milk of a certain grade will be 10 cents per quart if delivered 
as usual, or 8 cents if the consumer comes to certain depots 
with her own container. This is the right saving principle : 
to separate delivery cost from actual cost. Again, the cash 
customer should receive a percentage off on his purchases, 
or be entitled to lower prices. The "cash-and-carry" stores 
always can undersell stores with charge accounts. 

Frequently, too, the customer is under the illusion that 
when she buys from manufacturer or jobber direct, that she 
is getting a "wholesale price." This is seldom, if ever, the 
case, for the manufacturer who advertises that he will sell 
"direct to you" has to pay the cost of advertising and printed 
matter ; he has to make separate deliveries, take care of the 
risk, the collections, etc. In a word, he must assume some of 
the expense of the retailer. He cannot possibly sell you one 
chair for as low a price as 100 chairs to a retailer. Thus 
the consumer never gets the wholesale price, though the 
price may be less than charged by the local retailer for 
goods in stock. 

The distinction between "quantity" buying and "whole- 
sale" buying should be kept clear. Oftentimes so-called 
"wholesale prices" can be obtained through the local retailer, 
on a special order, at no more than the "mail-order" price. 

It is a wise plan to co-operate with the local retailers and 
to understand their difficulties. The greatest saving in pur- 
chasing staples comes through quantity buying, as was 
shown in the purchase of meats, pages 191-193. 


The consumer can keep check on the retailer, especially 
in the case of market or fresh produce, by reading the mar- 
ket reports or quotations which tell her from day to day the 


fluctuations in food prices. The prices quoted for veg- 
etables, fruit, flour, etc., are for carload or loo-pound lots, 
and are the prices paid by the commission men, or whole- 
salers. These reports do not give the retail price because 
the desirability of goods, even in the same lot, varies, and 
thus no definite invariable increase can be added to the 
wholesale price, and the retail price estimated by the con- 
sumer. But the reports do help her by telling her the head- 
lines, which state whether a certain commodity has risen or 
fallen in price. If the rise or fall is steady for two successive 
days, the retail market will be affected on the second or third 
day. War and labor conditions, the reports from the gov- 
ernment's "volunteer crop reporters," who tell Uncle Sam 
about local crop conditions all these will be straws to show 
which way the market winds blow, and which can be inter- 
preted by the observant consumer so that she can buy to 
advantage. For instance, if weather conditions have been 
such that the potato crop is scarce, then it would be wise 
to put in a supply early, before the prices rise, due to gen- 
eral shortage. Or, if the new wheat crop is affected by 
blight, buy a barrel of flour at once (flour held in mills), 
before price advances on the new milling. 

It has been pointed out that quantity buying is preferable 
to "bag" or package buying, wherever possible. But to 
practice quantity buying, there must be adequate storage 
space, of the right temperature, and such inspection that a 
large portion of the goods will not waste, and thus undo the 
original saving.* Such staples as matches, candles, sugar, 
flour, etc., are always best bought in quantity, if space per- 
mits. On the other hand, it is not generally advisable to buy 
perishables in quantity unless the needs of the family are 

Send for U. S. Bulletin No. 375, "Care of Food in the Horn*." 


well estimated ; also, such articles as soda biscuit, spices, cof- 
fee, etc., involving crispness and flavor, must be well pro- 
tected from air and moisture. Too frequently a large quan- 
tity is bought because the price is low, and then the food 
must be served so frequently as to tire the family palate, in 
order to "use it up." In buying packaged goods or small 
jars of such foods as potted meats, fish, etc., it is economy 
to buy, say one jar or package at 25 cents, rather than two 
jars, one at 15, and the other at 10, which, together, 
will not contain as many ounces as the larger jar at the same 

If, however, the family is small, it is greater economy to 
buy in small quantity. All buying should, indeed, be based 
on the "purchasing sheet" (see page 186), and on the experi- 
ments the housekeeper herself makes and finds out in regard 
to her own particular family. Seasons also affect all buy- 
ing, as in summer, less coffee may be used and more fruit 
syrups, or less cereals, and the heavier meal, beans, etc. 
Never keep cereals and a quantity of flour over the warm 
weather, as insects or mold are likely to develop. Daily 
shopping is not necessary; twice or, at most, tri-weekly 
ordering makes for efficiency and the "advance preparation" 
of meals. In the author's home, five miles from fresh sup- 
plies, and 40 miles from a city, meat and perishables are 
bought once a week ; monthly a large grocery order is sent 
to a city dealer and that ends all the marketing ! 


All marketing should be primarily on the food budget, 
which gives the total sum to be spent for food during the 
year, based on a general average for each month. If staples 
are purchased in quantity, the expenditures of one month 
may greatly exceed the average. This excess should be 


apportioned over the succeeding months ; thus, $24.00 spent 
for winter vegetables to last six months will reduce the 
allowance for food $4.00 a month for six months. Such 
seasonable buying should be provided for somewhat as 

January Linens, reduced price winter clothing and 

February Canned goods. 

March Kitchen utensils. 

April Barrel sugar, preserving and canning jars and 

May Coal. 

June Box of soap. 

July Reduced price summer garments and textiles. 

August Furniture, reduced price summer furnishings, 
blankets and bedding. 

September Winter apples, root vegetables, onions. 

October Canned goods, potatoes, cereals, dried vege- 

November Lard, smoked meats, syrups. 

December Holiday gifts and extra delicacies. 


Another means of lowering distribution costs, is for the 
consumer to buy co-operatively with other consumers. Con- 
siderable money can frequently be saved if four to ten fam- 
ilies make up an order together and get the quantity price, 
and pay only one charge for delivery, instead of many. 
There are, however, frequently marked disadvantages, espe- 
cially if the people ordering do not live closely together, or 
do not have the same tastes, as each family is more limited 
to choice and selection when nine other families must be con- 


sidered. Again, some one member of the group must take 
charge of collecting the money, be responsible for it, and 
take her own time to go to market, see to the delivery, and 
attend to the partition of the order into ten different deliv- 
eries. It often seems a fallacy to suppose that nine persons 
are going to be able to get a tenth most intelligent consumer 
to buy for them, and yet not pay her for the time and intel- 
ligence and effort she puts into that shopping. Further, if 
this tenth person is paid for the time spent, then the articles 
bought co-operatively may cost about as much as if bought 
at the high individual price. However, two or three neigh- 
bors can club together to buy a barrel of apples, crate of 
oranges, 3O-dozen crate of eggs and the like with a consid- 
erable saving in price and not too much trouble. 

Co-operative stores are successful in some parts of the 
country, but are not nearly so common as in other countries. 


In a small and sporadic way, the parcel-post system helps 
the consumer by enabling her to get products from the farm 
to the city. The disadvantages of the method are that some- 
times the containers devised are not satisfactory and too 
much breakage occurs. Also, the shippers themselves com- 
plain that the deliveries are not sufficiently prompt to satisfy 
their customers, much discontent being found with delayed 
orders. Vegetables, fowls, or cured meats pack and carry 
the best. 

One of the most successful developments in this line is the 
well-known "hamper" deliveries of the L. I. R. R. Agricul- 
tural Experiment Station at Medford, L. I., where different 
sized hampers of assorted vegetables are sent twice weekly 
to city customers. Now that autos are in such common use, 
it is quite possible for city people to make a weekly trip to a 


farm, with which a standing order is placed for specific 

On the other hand, it is a not uncommon experience to find 
that the country producer charges exactly the city quota- 
tion, and expects his customers to carry home products them- 
selves or that he even refuses to sell retail at a good fair 
price, and prefers to sell all his produce at a low figure to a 
food contractor. The situation differs widely in different 
sections, but is worth trial. The U. S. Department of Agri- 
culture is encouraging parcel-post marketing, and postmast- 
ers usually have a list of producers. Some of the express 
companies also have lists. 


The telephone habit, as generally practiced, makes for 
extravagance, encourages hand-to-mouth buying without 
advance buying, and increases the cost of doing business to 
the retailer. In every case greater economy will result if the 
housekeeper picks out the desired cut and amount herself 
than if left to the dealer over the 'phone. By marketing 
personally, a better idea of what is seasonal is obtained and 
the chance to substitute the cheaper vegetables or fruit than 
those intended. By choosing a time of day, preferably be- 
fore 10 a. m., and by having a tentative purchasing sheet in 
hand, little time will be lost. Some market days are better 
than others Tuesday, Thursday and Saturday in most 
cities for the selection of perishables. The telephone habit 
encourages that lack of knowledge of conditions and prices 
as exampled by the woman who ordered celery in May and 
complained that it cost 35 cents a bunch and that she was 
being robbed. If she had shopped personally, she would 
have, doubtless, found young carrots and spinach at a third 
the cost. 



The purchasing of food supplies is the most important 
of all buying, since from one-fourth to one-half of the 
income is spent for foods, and the smaller the income, the 
larger the sum that must be spent. There is no relation, 
fortunately, between the cost of food and its nutritive value. 
The cost as paid by the consumer is determined by many 
other factors, such as the cost of production, especially with 
animals eating grains, which today is much higher than for- 
merly; by the cost of transportation, as with the citrus 
fruits brought the "long haul" from Florida or the West ; by 
when the food is "in season"; by the way it is packed, 
in bulk, or in fancy basket or carton; by whether it is 
"selected," all of one grade, appearance and size; by the 
degree of its perishability, especially with such crops as 
lettuce, berries and other fruits. 

Broadly, there are two bases on which to buy foods: 

1 i ) a basis of nutritive value, or how much the food will be 
actually worth to the body as fuel and building material, and 

(2) a basis of taste and esthetic appeal of flavor, color, tex- 
ture, shape, etc. On a generous income, there is less need 
to think of the nutritive value, and more scope to buy foods 
which please and attract the eye or palate. But on any in- 
come, every housekeeper should think, not in terms of mar- 
ket price, but in terms of nutritive value first, in order that 
her family shall be well nourished. There is far too strong 
a tendency to think that foods which we like are good for us, 
and to let appearance and flavor determine selection, when, 
so far as real nourishment goes, they are secondary. 


An ordinary diet must contain from 2,000 to 3,000 or more 
"food units" (calories), depending chiefly on size of body 


and amount of muscular exercise. The calories give the 
measure of the "fuel value/' or the "heat and energy value" 
of the food. Thus, perfectly dry starch, sugar or protein 
yields the body i ,820 calories per pound, while fat gives 
4,040 calories per pound. 

The U. S. Department of Agriculture has found by experi- 
ment the average calorific requirements of the body under 
different conditions as follows: 


Weight of Body (Ibs.) no 120 130 140 150 160 170 

Asleep in bed 47 52 56 61 65 63 70 

Sitting quietly 73 80 87 94 100 105 no 

Light exercise 125 136 148 159 170 178 187 

Active exercise 140 152 165 177 190 200 209 

Severe exercise 330 360 390 420 450 471 496 

Thus, a woman of about 130 pounds, sleeping for 8 hours, 
doing light housework 10 hours, reading, etc., 6 hours, would 
require (8x56) + (lox 148) + (6x87) =2,450 calories. A 
boy of about the same weight with 8 hours' sleep, 8 hours' 
active exercise, 6 hours' playing tennis (severe exercise), 
and 2 hours' quiet would require (8x56) + (8xi65) + 
(6x390) + (2x87) =4,282 calories. He would need a little 
more food to provide for growth. No wonder he has such a 
ravenous appetite ! A nervous, restless person will require 
somewhat more calories than indicated in the table ; a thin 
person will need about as much food as if of normal weight ; 
and fat above the average should be disregarded. 

The subject of balanced diet has been considered briefly 
(pages 180-183). On a calorie basis a balanced diet means 
that out of each 100 calories, 10 to 14 should be protein, 20 
to 40 fat, and 30 to 60 starch and sugar. A mixed diet, 
unless badly one-sided, will come within this range. 


Food products have high "fuel value" when they contain 
but little water. As fats give 2^4 times the food units of 
carbohydrates, or protein, foods which contain much fat 
have very high fuel value. 

The following table gives the general average of calories 
per pound of classes of food as eaten, i. e., without waste, 
and also the number of calories which come from the protein 
in 100 calories of each food. Commit it to memory. 



Calories Protein Cal- 
per Ib. ories in 100 
Cereals flour, meals, breakfast foods, maca- 

aroni, etc 1650 12 

Bread 1200 13 

Beans, peas, lentils (dry) 1500 25 

Meat (fat) 1500 20 

Meat (medium) 1200 30 

Meat (lean) 900 40 

Cheese 2000 25 

Eggs (8 or 9) 635 32 

Milk (pint) 310 19 

Potato (white) 385 10 

Root vegetables 200 10 

Green and watery vegetables 100 12 

Fruits (fresh) 300 to 400 3 

Fruits (dried) 1300 to 1500 3 

Nuts (shelled) 3000 13 

Butter pleo 3400 0.5 

Lard, crisco, salad oils 4000 oo 

Sugar 1750 oo 

NOTE. Meats vary so much in composition that it is difficult to 
give general averages; e.g., veal may have only 600 calories per 
pound and have 70 calories of protein in 100; fat pork may give 
over 2,000 calories per pound and have only 12 protein calories in 100. 

In a diet containing 3,000 calories per day, for example, 
300 calories or somewhat more should come from protein, 
and the balance from starch, sugar and fats. As will be 


noticed from the table, all food, except the fruits and manu- 
factured food like butter, lard and other fats, corn starch 
and sugar have 10 or more calories of protein per 100 cal- 
ories of the food, so that it is not difficult to plan a diet con- 
taining sufficient protein. But feeding the family is also 
a matter of satisfying the appetite of the different members 
and here cooking and manner of serving is more important 
than the chemical composition of foods. 

The fuel value alone is not the only consideration. Cheap 
fuel calories may be dear protein calories, and vice versa. 
Also many foods which have low fuel value, such as the 
watery vegetables may be of sufficient value, even at high 
prices, when we consider the mineral salts and bulk or 
"roughage" qualities they offer. Spinach, lettuce, string 
beans, celery, etc., must be purchased considering the value 
they give in the necessary iron and calcium. Milk and eggs 
are especially valuable for children, for, in addition to their 
protein and salts, they contain "vitamines" and "lipoids," 
which are necessary for growth. Vitamines are also present 
in meats, vegetables, fruits, and the outer covering of grains. 

When prices go up we are apt to feel that some common 
foods become too expensive to use. For example, a quart 
of milk at 12 cents seems high, but is equivalent in fuel value 
to about a pound of lean steak, which may cost 25 cents, or 
eight eggs costing 30 cents, or a quart of oysters costing 40 
cents. Sugar and oatmeal have practically the same calorific 
value (1,750 per pound) and cost about the same price per 
pound, but 300 of the calories of the oatmeal come from 
protein, while the sugar has none. The oatmeal also fur- 
nishes iron, phosphorus and calcium salts, all of which are 
necessary to the body. In comparison, then, oatmeal gives 
more value than sugar, though not more fuel value. 



The easiest way to become familiar with the "fuel value" 
of different food is by examining a table of "100 calorie por- 
tions," as devised by Dr. Irving Fisher. This table is re- 
printed in the bulletin Food Values, and also shows the dis- 
tribution of the calories of protein and fat and carbohydrate 
in the 100 calorie portions, which gives a better understand- 
ing of the real composition of food than percentage by 
weight. For example, shelled almonds by weight have a 
composition of 21% of protein, 55% of fat, 17% of carbo- 
hydrate, 2% of ash and 5% of water apparently a high 
protein food. On the calorie basis of each 100 calories of 
almonds 13 come from protein, 77 from fat, and 10 from car- 
bohydrate. Entire wheat flour gives about 15 of protein, 5 
of fat, and 80 of carbohydrate from each 100 calories. On a 
percentage by weight basis, the wheat flour shows only 14% 
protein. Thus, wheat is really a higher protein food than 
almonds, though the opposite might be inferred simply by 
examining a table of composition by weight. The contrast 
is even more apparent in comparing foods containing much 
water with dry foods. For example, milk contains only 
about 3^2% of protein by weight, but of each 100 calories, 
19 or 20 are from protein. 

It so happens that a loo-calorie portion of food corre- 
sponds in many cases to a serving. For example, there are 
100 calories in a large slice of bread, an ordinary pat of 
butter, i*/2 cubic inches of cheese, ^ of a glass of milk, small 
serving of beef, 2 apples, a large banana, 2 small oranges, 
3 heaping teaspoons or i l / 2 square lumps of sugar, etc., etc. 
After weighing out 100 calorie portions of food and actually 
seeing the quantity, it is easy to estimate closely the amount 
of food being served. 

*"Food Values; Practical Methods in Diet Calculations." Published by 
American School of Home Economics. Price, 10 cents. 


It would be helpful if all cook books gave the calorific 
value of recipes. This is happily being done in some books.* 

It is not difficult to figure out the calories in recipes by 
using the following approximate values : 


Measure Weight Calories 


Flour, wheat (sifted) i cup 4 oz. 450 

Flour, wheat (sifted) I tbsp. 30 

Corn meal i cup 5 oz. 500 

Butter oleo i cup 8 oz. 1700 

Butter oleo i tbsp. no 

Lard i cup 8 oz. 1000 

Lard i tbsp. 120 

Crisco, cottolene, salad oil i cup 6 l /z oz. 1600 

Crisco, cettolene, salad oil i tbsp. 100 

Sugar (granulated) i cup 7^5 oz. 850 

Sugar (granulated) i tbsp. 50 

Milk i cup S l / 2 oz. 170 

Egg (whole) 70 

Egg (yolk) 54 

Egg (white) 16 

NOTE. Complete and detailed tables, together with food units in 
many standard recipes are given in Feeding the Family, Rose, price, 


It is not a very complicated matter to plan menus for a 
given sum with the required number of calories for the 
family, as is the practice in scientific feeding in hospitals, 
sanitaria, and in the army and navy. 

* "The New Cookery," Lenna Francis Cooper, $2.00. "A Guide to Invalid 
Cookery," Fanny Merritt Farmer. 



The amount of waste or refuse must always be considered 
in buying food. This is particularly necessary in purchasing 
meat, for the amount of bone and trimmings varies greatly 
in the different cuts and to a considerable extent in the same 
cut of different grades of meat. The tables in U. S. Bulletin 
No. 28, "Chemical Composition of American Food Mate- 
rials/' give the percentage of waste in detail. For example, 
the average for ribs of beef is 20%, and for shank of beef, 
55% ; in the ribs, the variation of refuse is from 13% to 
29%, and in the shank, 50% to 68%. It is an excellent plan 
to actually weigh at home the amount of bone and trimmings 
and figure the percentage of edible meat being delivered. 
It will be found that bones and trimmings frequently amount 
to half the purchased weight. The amount of trimming 
before weighing varies in different localities and by different 
butchers. All trimmings and bone paid for should be deliv- 
ered, as the fat can be tried out and utilized, and the bones 
are of value in the soup kettle. 

It will be noticed from the tables in Bulletin No. 28 that 
lean meats contain considerable more water than fat meats, 
even in the same cut. As an example, the edible portion of 
lean round is shown to contain 74% of water and 3% of 
fat, while the edible portion of very fat round is shown to 
contain 56% of water and 26% of fat. The first has a fuel 
value of 475 calories per pound, while the fat round gives 
1,145 calories per pound. The lean round has only a little 
higher percentage of protein than the fat. Medium fat 
meats give more value for the money, as well as being of 
better flavor. 

The price of the cheaper cuts of first quality meat is but 
little higher than second and third quality, while the nutri- 
tive value is greater and the flavor far superior. The follow- 


flig newspaper quotations of wholesale price of beef brings 
out this point : 


No. i No. 2 No. 3 

Ribs 21 20 13 

Loins . . 27 23 15 

Rounds 17 16 13 

Chucks 15 M 13 

Plates 13 12 ii 

It will be noticed that there is a difference of only 2 cents 
per pound in the price of first quality chucks and third 
quality, while there is a difference of 12 cents between the 
corresponding grades of loin. City retail butchers usually 
have to buy extra loins and ribs, in addition to sides of beef, 
to fill the demand for choice cuts. Oftentimes the cheaper 
cuts of meat can be purchased at the high-class stores at a 
better price than shops catering to poorer trade, with the 
additional advantage of getting first quality meat. 

The economy of buying meats in quantity has been shown 
(page 191). Marketing for meat is the most difficult and 
important part of food purchasing, for one-quarter to one- 
third of the money spent for food usually goes to the butcher. 
Considerable study and experience are needed to become an 
efficient purchaser of meat. Then the skill of the cooking 
has much to do with the money that need be spent in this 
division. There are a number of excellent U. S. Govern- 
ment bulletins on meats. 

No. 391 "Economical Use of Meat in the Home." (Free.) 
No. 526 "Mutton and Its Value in the Diet." (Free.) 
No. 34 "Meats: Composition and Cooking." (Free.) 
No. 467 "The Food Value and Use of Poultry." Price, 5c (coin). 
No. 469 "Fats and Their Economical Use in Home." Price, 50 
No. 28 Chemical Composition of American Food Materials. 
Price, loc. 

Send to Superintendent of Documents, Washington, D. C, for 
bulletins "for sale." Stamps not accepted. The "free" bulletins are 
distributed by the Department of Agriculture and Senators and 
Representatives. They cost 5c each if sent to Canada, etc. 



The following table, figured on fairly high retail prices 
(but not "war" prices), will be useful in giving the relative 
costs of 1,000 calories of food. A similar table based on 
your local current price will well repay the trouble of 
making it. 





FOOD price 

per Ib. 

Porterhouse 35 

Chuck ribs (medium) .20 

Flank (rib) 18 

Dried smoked beef... .50 

Forequarter veal 30 

Mutton, loin 27 

Leg of lamb 24 

Chicken (fowl) 24 

Mackerel 16 

Canned salmon 25 

Oysters (pint) 25 

Eggs (8 eggs) 20 

Butter 35 

Lard, etc 22 

Whole milk (i pt.) . . . .04 

Cheese 25 

Macaroni 12 

Rice 10 

Potatoes ($i.5obu.).. .025 

White bread 08 

Whole wheat bread.. .15 

Wheat flour 04 

Honey 30 

Sugar 07 

Dried pea beans 08 

Mushrooms 50 

Tomatoes 04 

Bananas (3 to Ib.) 06 

Oranges (4 to Ib.) 10 

English walnuts 25 

Dates 15 

Chocolate 40 

Raisins ... .12 

Percentage Price Calories Cost per 

of edible per Ib. as 1,000 
waste portion purchased calories 





1 6.0 






II. 2 







I O.O 




















































I. II 



















NOTE. The simplest method of figuring fhe price of edible por- 
tions of food is to consider 100 Ibs. ; thus, in 100 Ibs. of porterhouse 
steak there will be 12.7 Ibs. of bone, etc., and 87.3 Ibs. meat. 100 Ibs. 
would cost $35.00 and i Ib. would cost $35.00 * 87.3 or $0.40. The cost 
of 1,000 calories is found by multiplying the price paid by 1,000 and 
dividing by the number of calories per pound as purchased in the 

The figures given in U. S. Bulletin No. 142, "Principles of Nutri- 
tion and Nutritive Value of Food" (price, 5 cents), were used for 
this table. 


The trained consumer should be familiar with at least 
the most common laws in her state, passed for her protec- 
tion in regard to the standards and handling of products, 
and must co-operate in their enforcement. The national 
government has taken some steps to enforce high standards 
in the manufacture and handling of products ; but the con- 
sumer must generally depend on the laws of her particular 
state and city to insure her purity, quality and sanitation, 
especially among such products as meats, ice cream, fish, 
milk, oysters and other perishables. Each state has some 
well-organized department located at the state capitol ; each 
city has a board of health and various officers who oversee 
weights and measures, detect adulteration, unsanitary condi- 
tions, etc., and prosecute the offending dealers. 

Both these state (or county) and city departments have 
issued definite laws on how much certain commodities must 
weigh, what constitutes standard scales, measures and in- 
fringements of the law. The consumer should send for 
copies of these bulletins (to the state capital) : "Specifica- 
tions for Weighing and Measuring Devices," issued by the 
Board of Agriculture of Ohio, or the Bulletin "What Every 
Housewife Should Know," issued by the New Jersey State 
Department of Weights and Measures ; or the "Sanitary 
Code" of any city, which gives the laws governing the han- 


dling of foods, as cold storage chickens, loose milk, "base- 
ment bakeries" or open markets. Armed with the informa- 
tion contained in the bulletins of her respective state (and 
city), each consumer will be able to detect violations of the 
law and insist on honesty and freedom from adulteration, 
etc. For instance, there has been a strong fight for more 
sanitary handling of all products in all sections. The intelli- 
gent consumer will no longer tolerate bakery goods exposed 
to flies, "loose" milk opened a dozen times daily and kept in 
foul ice chests, or ice cream factories where the floor is filthy 
and the workmen themselves unclean. 

Economical purchasing does not mean getting foods and 
products which are merely "cheap," but those which have 
been made under or handled in a way to safeguard family 
health. Foods made under filthy conditions or treated, adul- 
terated or processed with chemicals cannot be "cheap" at 
any price! It is a large share of the modern consumer's 
work and training to detect such frauds, boycott them and 
bring them to the attention of the proper inspectors. 


A discussion of the common adulterants found in manu- 
factured foods, or various fraudulent practices, is taken up 
here, not to prejudice the consumer against all dealers, but 
merely to warn her as to possible deceit. "Forewarned is 
forearmed," and knowledge of wrong only protects the right. 
Naturally, in all manufacture there are a few firms who try 
to make additional money out of the ignorance of the con- 
sumer. Therefore it behooves the consumer to be doubly 
intelligent ! Most of the dealers in manufactured foodstuffs 
are trying to give the consumer clean, unadulterated prod- 
ucts made in sanitary factories by clean workers. The 


National Food and Drug Act passed in 1907 has helped 
conditions greatly. However, there is still a great deal of 
adulteration in many classes of foods in which there is 
profit when inferior materials can be substituted. 


A pure food must fulfill these requirements : 

1. It must not be positively adulterated with foreign sub- 

stances, as ground hulls for the true ground spice buds. 

2. It must not be treated with chemical preservatives like 

benzoate or salicyclic acids, as in some catsups and 
canned vegetables. 

3. It must not be made of "substitutes," as starch and lard 

for true cream in ice cream, or as starch in chocolate. 

4. It must not be artificially colored with dyes or flavored 

with chemical flavors, as in candies or "soft drinks." 

5. It must not be handled in a dirty, unsanitary way, or by 

unclean workers. 

6. It must not have some of the valuable elements or parts 

of the food removed, so as to make it a "devitalized" 

food, as polished rice or bleached flour. 
These may seem like impossible demands. Yet unless the 
consumer insists that these pure food standards be lived up 
to, she cannot be sure that her family, and especially her 
children, are eating manufactured or bought foods that will 
nourish them or that will positively not harm them. If 
health depends on food, then surely that food must be as 
pure, clean, and as rich in nourishment as nature originally 
made it. 


It is often remarked that Americans will "stand" any- 
thing; and certainly it is either because they are overly 
complacent, or else actually ignorant, that the consumer 



allows startling and disgusting practices to be followed. 
Let us quickly list some of the food practices which she 
should not tolerate : 

1. "Basement bakeries," no light, unsanitary, moldy condi- 

tions, unhealthy workers. 

2. Artificial coloring and flavoring of candies, cakes; soft 

drinks with chemicals. 

3. Substitution of low-grade materials in supposed high- 

grade products. 

4. Artificial preservatives to "keep" foods, as benzoate, 

"preservaline," etc. 

5. Exposed meat, bakery goods, or permission of sale of 

same in open carts, wagons or stalls. 

6. "Devitalizing" of flours and "bleaching," which lessens 


Space does not permit going into the details of all these 
frauds ; but many times the consumer is quite responsible 
for these frauds, although she may not realize it. For 
instance, flour is now "bleached" very white, and rice grains 
given artificial polish solely because women want or have 
made a market for white foods, and refuse to buy dark- 
colored grains and flours! Again, mothers who give their 
children soda water which is only water sweetened with 
saccharine and colored with coal-tar dyes, cannot expect to 
blame the dealers. They must refuse to purchase such foods, 
and then the dealers, finding trade unprofitable, will be 
forced to change their ways. 

At a recent Farmers' Institute in a large western state 
the author was conducting a week's series of lectures. One 
morning, before going to the lecture hall, she visited a dozen 
shops and purchased about thirty samples of "penny line" 
candies. She had a beautiful ( !) assortment of candy made 
of paraffine, starch and glucose ; -varnished, brightly colored 


with dyes, flavored with artificial products, and in all quite 
an exhibit. The samples were on a table and brought to the 
attention of the mothers present. Many would not believe 
that such candies were purchased only two blocks from their 
homes! or that such vile candies were made! The exhibit 
was passed on to the parent-teacher association, and effort 
made to educate children to buy other and purer uncolored 



No one not directly connected with investigation in this 
line would believe the extent of fraud and deception prac- 
ticed in connection with all kinds of weights and measures. 
Owing to recent campaigns for greater honesty, almost 
nation-wide, and a demand that false measures be confis- 
cated and dishonest dealers be prosecuted, conditions today 
are much better than formerly. There are still, however, 
many dishonorable practices or causes for faulty weighing. 
The consumer must be on her guard against them. 

i. Scales may be faulty because the scale is out of balance, 
and is too heavy on the scoop side ; or the scale may 
balance when equal weights are placed in the center 
of the pan, but not when the weights are shifted right 
or left ; the scale may be "insensitive" owing to poor 
construction, worn or broken parts ; false weight may 
be given by attaching small wads of iron, lead, hooks 
or some small article under the scoop, or on the cross 
under the scoop ; the "nested" iron weights may be 
stacked as 8 oz., 4 oz., 2 oz., thus totaling 14 oz. instead 
of the required 16; the "poise" may be light, thus 
registering more than is true on the scoop ; the weights 
themselves may be worn, drilled, or "filled" with lighter 


substances ; or even in the beginning they may never 
have been accurately adjusted so as to weigh correctly. 

2. Dry measures may be faulty because of "false" bot- 

toms, as in wicker baskets, barrels and measures ; they 
may have "false" sides or be so cut down as to reduce 
the depth and hence the true amount; they may be 
broken, dented, or originally of wrong or "short" ca- 
pacity, especially wicker or berry boxes holding less 
than the standard amount ; or six-quart measures may 
be used illegally for peck or eight-quart measures; 
or liquid measure, which is less, may be used for dry 

3. Liquid measures may be faulty because the measures 

are bent or dented ; or they have a "cupped" bottom ; 
or they are leaky; or they were originally manufac- 
tured "short." 

4. Linear measures may be faulty because the yardstick is 

warped or "short"; counter tacks may be wrongly 
placed; the cloth tape measure may be shrunk or 
inaccurately divided. 

The department of weights and measures of each state 
employs both county and city "sealers" men whose duty 
it is to periodically test all scales and measuring devices. 
If the measure passes the test, the dealer is allowed to con- 
tinue its use, and the scale is marked with a large seal, 
generally red, so that the consumer may know that it will 
register correct weight. If it does not pass the test, it is 
"condemned" and its use forbidden. Sometimes several 
thousand inaccurate or false measures are "condemned" and 
burned by state authorities. 

While the laws of different states vary, it is almost uni- 
versally conceded that the older type arm or balance scale 
with scoop and iron weight is least trustworthy. The pre- 



Condemned by The Chicago Bureau of Weights and Measures. 

ferred scale is that called the "pan" or hanging type, or 
the excellent glass protected "computing" scale. Scales car- 
ried by ice men or platform scales on which coal and large 
amounts are weighed are most frequently faulty. Again, the 


Three Baskets Nested and Concealed Under the Top Band. 
Courtesy of Illustrated World. 


dealer is not supposed to rest his hand on the scale, place 
the package unevenly, take it off before the consumer reads 
the dial, or, for instance, weigh butter in a wooden container 
unless a similar container, empty, be placed on the opposite 
side. In the case of hams and other foods covered with 
burlap, a certain legal allowance must be made, of about 
four ounces. Meat dealers are allowed to sell meat at the 
untrimmed weight, but these trimmings belong to the house- 
keeper. If left with the butcher they will be resold by him 
to rendering plants. On a five-pound leg of lamb there may 
be as much as a pound and a quarter of trimmings. It will 
pay, and pay well, to check up the weight of all food coming 
into the house. Tests have shown as much as 20% short- 
age. A good scale is necessary (see page 6). 

It is a rather common custom to sell dry beans and peas 
and cranberries by the liquid quart ( one-quarter gallon), 
which contains about one-sixth less in volume than the dry 
measure quart. This practice is not legal, even if it is the 

In all of this discussion, let it not be thought that every 
dealer is unscrupulous. The majority of all dealers in all 
lines intend giving dependable measures, but frequently 
scales become inaccurate without the dealer knowing it; 
or he may have happened to buy a cheap, unreliable measure 
from some unscrupulous manufacturer. The consumer 
should insist on honesty, not so much to prosecute the dis- 
honest dealer as to protect herself and give a fair deal to 
the man who is trying to be fair to her. The reliable dealer 
who has nothing to fear will not be incensed if the consumer 
investigates his measures, the sanitary conditions of his 
store, or other of his selling methods, but will welcome 
investigation, as it will only serve to bind the intelligent 
consumer more closely to his establishment. 

All purchasing should be by definite weight or amount, 


as bushel, peck, quart, gallon, etc. Instead, for instance, 
of buying a bushel of potatoes, the consumer will be assured 
of getting her money's worth if she asks for sixty pounds of 
potatoes, or whatever the legal amount is in her particular 
state. Nothing makes for more wasteful, inefficient buying 
than this mistake of buying by the "bag" (how much does 
it contain?), as no two dealers sell the same kind of "bags," 
and even the same dealer might at different times be using 
different kinds of measures, so that the consumer can never 
be sure of always getting a definite quantity for a definite 
sum, unless she asks the price per weight of a definite stand- 
ard, as a bushel, or fraction of a bushel, or gallon. 

State laws are by no means uniform ; each state has, for 
its own limits, passed standard weights per bushel for differ- 
ent articles, as shown in the table on the next page, taken 
from Measurements for the Household, Circular No. 55, U. 
S. Bureau of Standards. 


An amendment to the National Food and Drug Act passed 
in 1914 requires the net weight or volume of contents to be 
printed on the label of containers or packages distributed in 
interstate commerce. A number of states have also passed 
a similar law, so that practically everything in the food line 
except bulk goods is so labeled. For example, the various 
brands of popular breakfast foods contain (at present writ- 
ing) the following weights : 

Quaker Oats 

Cream of Wheat, 

Petti John 



Ib. 4 oz. Shredded Wheat 12 oz. 

Ib. 12 oz. Grape Nuts 14 oz. 

Ib. 8 oz. Corn Flakes 8 oz. 

Ib. 8 oz. Puffed Wheat 4 oz. 

Ib. 3 oz. Puffed Rice 4 oz. 











I I Carrots 


I I Parsnip 

I I Peaches 

S Potatoe 

<^ </, Sweet 
*" Potatoe 





. . 

. . 


. . 

. , 

. . 








. . 



, > 













. . 



. . 






























. . 









































. . 

. . 


























. . 


. . 

, . 



, . 









. . 



. . 

. . 



4 p 




t . 




















. . 


























New Hampshire 












New Jersey 









New Mexico 












New York 



. . 



. . 

. . 



, t 

. . 

North Carolina 



. . 




North Dakota 






, , 






























. . 

. . 

. . 













Rhode Island 












South Dakota 












Tennessee . . . . C 





































Washington ........ 




West Virginia 













The legal weight for a bushel of wheat, a bushel of dry, white 
beans, and dry peas, is 60 pounds, of corn and rye, 56 pounds, of 
oats, 32 pounds. Arizona, California, Delaware, District of Co- 
lumbia, Louisiana, South Carolina, Utah, and Wyoming have 
few or no legal weight laws. 

A bushel contains 4 pecks, and a peck 8 quarts. 


This law is a great help to the consumer in comparing 
prices of package goods with bulk goods or different brands 
of competing products, as in canned goods, and in keeping 
informed as to the price per pound of package goods. The 
"puffed" breakfast foods, for instance, at 15 cents a package 
cost 60 cents a pound. 

As the price of staples increases, the manufacturers have 
reduced the weight of contents, in self-defense. This fact is 
not advertised. For instance, some years ago a package of 

No. % No. 1 Short No. 1 Tall No. 2 No. 2% No. 3 


Quaker Oats contained 2 pounds the price remains the 
same (or more) but the contents of the package has been 
gradually reduced to I Ib. 4 oz. Uneeda Biscuits when first 
put on the market contained nearly half a pound ; the 
package now contains 4^ ounces. 


So many of the foods used in the home today come in 
packages and cans that it is necessary for the consumer to 
be familiar with the sizes and other facts of identification. 
She may have noted that peas, for instance, come in cans 
smaller than tomatoes ; but the first fact to learn is that all 


canned products, whether they be soup, vegetable, fruit, or 
other foods, are supposed to be packed according to a series 
of standard sizes, which contain corresponding weights, 
though the weights will vary somewhat for different 



f Sardines, potted meats, pastes,] 
l /4 \ "samples," condensed milk, 1-4 to 4% ounces 

[etc j 

fPotted delicacies : shrimp, lob-] 

V2 1 ster, clams, condensed milk, \ 8 or 7^4 ounces 

["flat" salmon (small), etc. ...J 

fCanned soup, potted or boned] 

i (short) { meats, tomato or other purees, [ 10 ounces 

[condensed milk J 

T ftiin snmp fCorn, peas, pineapple, sliced] 16 ounces and is 
times calleTiV ^P each es, flat or "tall" salmon, standard I Ib. or 
/2 ' [tomatoes, etc j i pt. can 

fSmall vegetables, like corn,] 
j beans, and small fruits, like( 

jberries, grated and chunk f r ltx 4 oz< 

[styles ..: j 

fMany large fruits and vegeta-] 

2*/2 (41-7" high) . ^ bles, baked beans, asparagus, \\ Ib. 1402. 
[tomatoes, etc j 

("Large fruits, peaches, pears,] 
3 Regular... {baked beans, whole tomatoes, \2 Ibs. i oz. 

[beets, spinach j 

3 Tall (55^" high). Same as above 2 Ibs. 6 oz. 

[Corn on cob, sauerkraut, soup] 

10 \ and large quantity for trade >6 Ibs. 6 oz. 

distribution ...... 

There is no number on the can, as "No. 2," to indicate its 
size, but this size can be easily determined by noting the 
weight, which is always printed in small numbers, generally 
at the base of the face or the reverse of the can. If the label 


reads, for instance, "i Ib. 14 oz.," it is probably a No. 2^ 
can. The same product may be packed in any one of three 
or four sizes. As an experiment, the author asked for "A 
can of tomatoes" in several stores. She was handed five 
different sizes of cans, varying in weight from 10 ounces to 
2 Ibs. 6 oz. or from the No. i "short" to the No. 3. Five 
different size cans all in answer to the same request for a 
''can" ! The grocer knows the various size cans by number. 
Therefore if you ask for them by number you have a better 
chance of ge f ting the exact size you wish. Then note care- 
fully the "net weight of contents" on the label. 


In one brand of pineapples, for instance, a No. 2*/> can 
contains ten large slices and costs 15 cents. The No. 2 can 
of the same grade contains six small slices and costs 10 
cents. In one case a large slice costs i^c, but buying the 
apparently cheaper can each small slice costs i^c. There- 
fore by estimating how many slices or portions are con- 
tained in different sized cans the housewife will be able to 
purchase more economically, buying the exact size can that 
suits her particular family's needs. It is generally better 
economy to purchase one large can and make it cover two 
servings than to purchase two small cans separately, because 
the smaller the size the higher, proportionately, is the price. 

Many kinds of fish and other food come in flat as well as 
tall cans. The tall No. i weighs exactly the same as a flat 
No. i, but the flat can generally costs 10% or 15% more. 
This is because, as in salmon, for instance, a solid piece of 
fish is cut right out of the best portion of the salmon, whereas 
the tall can is filled with one or two smaller pieces, which 
makes the packing less expensive. 

Sometimes the can appears partially empty at the top, as 


in corn. This is called "slack fill" and is contrary to law. 
It does not always mean that the can is short in weight. 
A certain amount of space must be left between the top of 
the can and the material in it, so that the red-hot "capping 
iron" will not scorch the contents. Corn especially swells 
in "processing," and extra allowance must be made. 

It is economy to purchase canned goods in quantity, as 
there is a reduction in goods bought by the case, or 24 cans. 
Fall is the time to purchase fresh season stuff. It is easy 
to estimate how many cans of the various products will be 
used per week, month or season, then to make up an order 
and purchase by the case (2 doz.), or at least the dozen. 
This is not only a money but a time saving, as all too fre- 
quently unnecessary time is wasted running to the store for 
a can of this or that. 

It is helpful to write in the kitchen note book the con- 
sumer's experience with various brands, sizes and grades 
of canned goods ; also the number of portions, slices, the 
quality, trade mark or other facts which will enable her to 
do future buying most economically and easily. No law 
compels canners to use uniform sizes, and as cost of mate- 
rials and labor increases there is a tendency to decrease the 
size of the cans instead of increasing the price. It is impos- 
sible to distinguish by the eye a can slightly under standard 
size, but the net weight on the label will reveal it. Again, 
the weight may be falsely kept up by the addition of extra 
water, as in tomatoes, which is an adulteration ; therefore 
those standard brands should be bought which have proved 
the test of honesty and full measure and quality. 

At retail city prices it is not always good economy to can 
vegetables and fruits at home, but near the source of supply 
or from the home garden a very considerable saving can be 
made by "putting up" canned goods. There are many Gov- 
ernment Bulletins on the subject which will be sent on 


request from the Department of Agriculture. The "cold 
pack" method seems easiest and is successful. 


It may be asked, if there are as many methods of deceit 
and adulteration as have been pointed out, how is the con- 
sumer to protect herself except by constant and continued 
investigation ? Will not every purchase be an experiment as 
to quality and purity? The one means of protection the 
consumer can rely on is the "trademark" on the package or 
product she buys. The "trademark" is some kind of label, 
emblem or other means of Identification bearing the manu- 
facturer's name, place of factory, weight, size, or other 
words leading to rapid identification on the part of the con- 
sumer. For instance, before buying a can of peas or a pair 
of hose, how can the consumer be sure of the quality and 
wear of these articles ? Only by selecting goods which bear 
a "trademark" or the name of a manufacturer who has come 
to be widely known as a maker of articles of quality and 


There has been a great deal of discussion as to the best 
kind of products to buy those which are "packaged," 
wrapped or in some kind of container bearing a trademark 
and those which are merely "loose" or "bulk," and un- 
wrapped or untrademarked, and which sometimes, as in 
"loose" tea, may cost a few cents less a pound than a pack- 
aged tea. Now, in the author's opinion, all "bulk" goods 
are open to the same criticism namely, that they are 
unidentified, and thus the consumer is unable to tell the 
quality in advance, and thus has no means of safeguarding 
her purchase. Identification is the only means of protecting 


the consumer as to the quality of what she buys. In other 
words, some kind of trademark saves the consumer's time by 
enabling her to pick out an article of known quality quickly, 
as well as being the sole means of identifying quality, or 
lack of quality. Not all trademarked goods are superior to 
bulk or unidentified merchandise; but the mere fact that they 
are "trademarked" and identifiable, protects the consumer 
either the one way or the other. Trademarked goods are 
generally superior to bulk goods for the following reasons : 

1. They furnish a means of identification either for or 

against quality. 

2. They give the manufacturer's name and location of fac- 


3. They inform the net weight or quality standard of the 


4. They permit more accurate weighing. 

5. They insure that the goods were made under sanitary 

conditions by sanitary workers. 

The man who is willing to put his name on his product, 
and the place where it is made, is generally the manufac- 
turer who has no fear of the investigations of the consumer. 
Also, if he has put out a trademarked product for years, the 
chances are strongly that the product has a high quality, or 
else consumers would long ago have found out its inferiority 
and put it off the market. And, last, the price of the iden- 
tified products of wide distribution is generally as low as 
that of a similar "bulk" article; because its wider distri- 
bution and long continued sale will have enabled the manu- 
facturer to install such machinery and methods in his fac- 
tory as to lower the producing cost, and thus sell his iden- 
tified article at as low a price as the unidentified "bulk" 
article can be sold. Examples of this are Ivory Soap and 
Walter Baker's Chocolate, sold under trademarked labels 


for many years, yet which are as low in price and of higher 
quality than similar competing unrecognized brands. 


There is another distinction in brands which the consumer 
must know. That is, the difference between the "private" 
and the genuinely "trademarked" brands of goods. For in- 
stance, here are two cans of tomatoes ; both apparently have 
a label and name. But if we look closely we see that Can A 
says, "Queen Tomatoes, packed for J. Jones & Company" ; 
Can B will say, "Smith's Tomatoes, S. & S.. Smith Bros., 
Vineland, New Jersey." What is the difference between 
these two labels ? The first is the label of a "private brand." 
It does not state the firm that packed it, only the name of 
the firm for whom it was packed. Also, it generally does 
not give the location of the factory where the product was 
packed. On the other hand, the label of can B does state 
the name of the packer and the place of the factory. In the 
first case, we have a "jobber" who wants to sell tomatoes. 
He gets any number of small factories, even in several states, 
to pack tomatoes for him. Then he has these cans sent to his 
wholesale house, and there puts his own labels on them. In 
the second case we have the original packer himself putting 
his own name on the goods and where they were packed. 

The "private" brand goods is put up in different factories, 
from different sources each year, and there is no guarantee 
of a permanent quality behind it. Since the name of the 
packer does not appear on the container, there is no way for 
the consumer to find out what kind of a factory or condi- 
tions it was packed under. On the other hand, the honest 
name of the packer himself insures the consumer that she 
can look up this man and this factory, and that he stands 
back of his goods, since he is willing to put his name on them. 


In every case, the trademarked brand carries more integ- 
rity or guarantee. It is now almost universal for the trade- 
marked brand to carry a refund guarantee of giving the 
consumer another article or refund of original purchase 
price if she is dissatisfied. If, for instance, the Kayser 
gloves do not wear as represented, or Holeproof sox develop 
holes within a certain time, the manufacturer "makes good" 
with duplicate articles. Some jobbers, it is true, have also 
established the high grades of their brands by years of fair 
dealing, and their goods can also be relied on in such cases. 

L~L , -1 


The label is the one protection of the consumer, if she 
only learns to always read it intelligently. Every label 
should declare the contents of the article; but often we 
may find labels that are deceptive, or which at least are 
far from straightforward. It is common on canned meats to 
find the words : 

"POTTED meat HAM flavor" 

so printed as to make the consumer think she is buying 
potted ham, when the contents are really only inferior meat 
scraps flavored with ham. Or she may think she has bought 
a bottle of vanilla, when really the label, closely read, states : 

"Extract of Vanillin" 

Now, vanillin is an artificial flavor made from the oil of 
cloves; even if it were as wholesome as true essence of 
vanilla from the tonka bean, it is not fair that the consumer 
should pay vanilla prices for vanillin. 

Similarly, "MAPLE flavor SYRUP," or other wording, 
reveals the fact tRat the possibly expensive syrup which the 
consumer thought was true maple syrup is only* a sugar 
syrup flavored and colored artificially. The labels on cat- 


sup, as "preserved with -fa of 1% of benzoate of soda, arti- 
ficially colored," etc., are familiar; often the words are 
purposely made misleading, as a cough syrup may say "Tinc- 
ture of Poppy, 2^"; but this "tincture" is really nothing 
but morphine or laudanum, if read intelligently. Drugs need 
most careful reading, as often headache powders which are 
claimed to be "harmless" contain acetanilid or other dan- 
gerous drugs. The consumer should be especially wary of 
the words "compound," "artificial" and "harmless." 


Modern advertising in periodicals, on billboards, cards, 
etc., is another means of bringing goods of all kinds to the 
consumer's attention. The costs of advertising must be 
included in the general cost of distribution of an article, 
and do not add any more to the price of an article than any 
other means of display, such as store window exhibits, cir- 
cular letters and the older forms of traveling salesmen which 
were practiced in the days before periodical publication 
made modern advertising methods possible. Advertising 
generally raises the standard of production (since it does 
not pay to advertise a poor product), at the same time that 
it makes possible wider distribution ; and wider distribution 
enables larger volume of production with consequent greater 
economy. Because it has brought so many thousand articles 
of furnishing, comfort, and luxury before the consumer, it 
has, naturally, tended to raise the standard of living. At 
the same time, our daily papers and periodicals would be 
impossible if it were not that the advertising they carry 
pays largely for their printing. Since most advertised arti- 
cles are also trademarked articles, they insure the consumer 
guarantee, identification and time-saving shopping. 



There are some forms of advertising practice, however, 
which should not be encouraged, chief of these the "cut- 
price" lure, especially on a trademarked article. These 
"specials," as "three cakes of Ivory Soap for a quarter," or 
Fownes' Gloves, $1.00 grade, only $0.79," are used solely 
to get the woman into the store, where they hope that she 
will buy other unindentified merchandise on which the dealer 
makes more profit but which are of poorer quality than 
the trademarked goods. In other words, the "cut" is merely 
"bait"; that it is not a sincere reduction is shown by the 
fact that it is offered "for this morning only," or "only one 
to a customer," or in some other way which has a "string" 
attached. The reason that such buying is demoralizing is, 
first, that it traps women into buying other goods of lesser 
quality; second, it gives them a false idea of the price 
which they should pay for the article a price which their 
own local retailer cannot meet, so that, therefore, after a 
time, he may refuse to carry the article because he cannot 
meet the "cut" and still make a profit. This may eventually 
drive good products off the market ; third, all juggling of 
price, and discrepancies, are bad, because they create in 
the consumer's mind false ideals and ideas of value, and 
encourage her to demand "bargains" to such an extent that 
merchants are forced to offer her inferior quality in order 
to satisfy this "bargain" appetite. 

The sister evil of the "marked up" price is also a result 
of this pernicious demand on the part of women. This 
means that the advertised price of an overcoat, say, is stated 
as "$40.00 overcoat, now only $19.50." The truth is that 
the overcoat was probably only a $25.00 grade in the first 
place, but that it has been falsely "marked up" in order to 
make the "bargain" seem more of a drop in price. Such 


practices must not be confused with legitimate reductions 
which occur at seasonal times. But it cannot be too strongly 
said that women must stop encouraging the "bargain habit" 
if they wish dealers to make conservative, dependable claims 
and statements. Before John Wanamaker developed and 
enforced his policy of plainly marked prices, the buyer did 
not know whether he was being cheated or not. Today the 
cut-price, the marked-up price, and misleading statements 
are still a few surviving mal-practices which the woman con- 
sumer must help eradicate. 


Next to food, clothing is the most important division in 
household purchasing. The efficient consumer must learn 
to distinguish, test and judge the wearing qualities and 
value of all articles of clothing and textile fabrics. The mar- 
ket carries so many grades and variously named novelties 
in fabrics that it is somewhat difficult for the buyer to judge 
intelligently. However, the number of "standard" fabrics 
are not very great, and the noveltie's are but variations of 
"standard" goods. 

The expert judges textiles by the appearance, feel and 
weight of the fabric and the knowledge of the various fibers, 
yarns and methods of weaving and finishing the goods. 

A knowledge of the common textile fibers is the first 
essential. Briefly, cotton fibers are very fine and compara- 
tively short 24 of an inch to an inch. Flax fiber is larger 
and much longer than cotton. Linen cannot be bleached by 
chemical means as easily as cotton or without losing strength 
and luster, nor can it be dyed as easily or are the colors as 
fast. It launders well but shrinks more than cotton. Linen 
has superior wearing qualities. 

As raw flax costs two or three times as much as cotton, 
and as the loss in finishing is much greater and the process 


more expensive, there is a strong temptation to adulterate 
linen with cotton to make goods less expensive. As is well 
known, cotton in table linen detracts from the wearing quali- 
ties, as the short fibers of the cotton give the pieces a fuzzy 
appearance after being used a short time. 

Silk fibers are very long, are strong, and have high luster. 
Soft silks wear better than stiff ones which are "weighted" 
with salts of tin and iron. This weighting decreases the 
strength of the fiber but makes it "go farther." Taffetas 
are examples of heavily weighted silk. 

Wool is the important animal fiber. Its scale-like surface 
gives it special felting and spinning qualities. It is strong, 
elastic, and when spun and woven the elastic properties give 
a great number of air spaces in the fabric, rendering clothing 
made from wool very warm and light. It will absorb up to 
30 percent of its weight of water without feeling damp to 
the touch. 

Wool fabrics are divided into "woolen" and "worsted" 
materials. The woolens are made from the short wool fibers 
obtained by carding the wool fleece. Woolen yarns are soft 
and fluffy. Worsteds are made from the long fibers which 
have been combed and carded until they lie smooth and 
parallel. They are then, twisted more tightly than woolen 
yarns, thus making it more regular and lustrous. Woolen 
materials are soft, elastic, of soft finish and blurred pattern. 
Worsted materials are of harder finish, show the weave more 
plainly, and have a clearer pattern. 

The expense of manufacture of worsted yarn is greater 
than for woolen yarn, consequently worsted materials cost 
more than woolens of the same weight and width. 


The mixing of fibers is legitimate, but the consumer has 
a right to know what percent of each textile she is pur- 


chasing, and not, for instance, pay "all wool" prices for 
material containing a large proportion of "shoddy" or other 
adulterant. The consumer often encourages adulteration by 
demanding very low-price materials. Generally, the brands 
of "trademarked" textiles, like "Skinner's Satin," etc., long 
established, can be best trusted. There should be a national 
"pure textile" law which would enforce labeling that would 
inform the consumer exactly what percent and grade of 
each textile she is buying. 

The following gives some of the common adulterations 
and simple home methods of testing : 

Cotton in Linen. Linen threads break off with sharp- 
pointed ends, while cotton threads break off short with fuzzy 
ends. A spot of oil or glycerine makes linen more trans- 
lucent than cotton. A drop of water on linen spreads 
rapidly ; on cotton it absorbs slowly. Singed ends of cotton 
thread spread out, while singed linen threads look close 
together and uniform. 

Cotton in Woolen and Worsteds. When cotton threads 
make up part of the warp (running threads) or the filling 
of the fabric, the cotton is easily detected by picking the 
threads apart and burning cotton burns quickly, with little 
odor or ash ; wool in burning gives the odor of burning 

When cotton fiber is spun with the wool, detection is 
more difficult. Boil a sample of the goods in a solution of 
washing soda, 2 tablespoons to a pint, for twenty minutes. 
The wool becomes jelly-like and may be separated from 
the cotton by rubbing in warm water. Or boil the sample 
in caustic soda solution (a two-inch stick of caustic in a cup 
of water) ; the wool will be dissolved completely and the 
cotton left. 

To remove cotton from woolen, boil sample in oxalic 
acid solution (one tablespoonful to a cup) and dry without 


rinsing. Then wash out the acid crystals, dry, and rub the 
goods compare with original sample or with sample that 
has been simply boiled in water and dried. 

Weighting of silk may be detected by laying a sample on a 
tin plate and leaving in a hot oven for about an hour. The 
pure .silk will be burned away and the weighting remain in 
the form of the sample; if it burns to a heap of ash, it is 
pure silk and not heavily weighted. 

Silk is sometimes adulterated with mercerized cotton, 
which is somewhat difficult to detect. Mercerized cotton 
is made by treating cotton threads with strong caustic soda 
solution while the cotton is under strong tension ; then the 
caustic is removed. This process swells the cotton fiber 
and gives it luster. The process strengthens the goods and 
makes a wear-resisting fabric, but it should not be sold at 
the price of silk. Artificial silk is made by dissolving 
cellulose (cotton) and forcing the pasty substance through 
small holes, thus giving the structure and somewhat the 
appearance of silk, but lacking its true softness and elasticity. 

To test any woven material, pull sharply between the 
two thumbs, first one way, then the other. If it gives much 
or tears apart easily, the fabric shows lack of strength. 
Close, firm weaves are more enduring than loosely woven 
ones. By holding a sample of cloth to the light, imperfec- 
tions may be detected. Rubbing the material between the 
hands or thumb and first finger will often detect "sizing" 
in the goods. 

Wash goods may be tested by taking a sample home 
and heating a part of it in soap and water. If the color 
"bleeds" it will be quickly apparent. Moistening a sample 
and exposing it to direct sunshine for a day or two will 
show its fastness to light. A part of the original sample 
should be kept for comparison. Washing will also remove 
starches and gums used in finishing to conceal defects and 


give an attractive appearance. The author recalls some 
yards of Swiss with a beautiful "dot," which in the first 
washing, disappeared! 

The word "shoddy" is often heard and not as often under- 
stood. "Shoddy" is the technical term of "regenerated" 
wool, made from old woolen and worsted garments, rags 
and tailors' scraps. These are pulled apart and the fibers 
respun. "Shoddy" is coarse, inelastic, and short-fibered ; 
material made from it will crease easily, and have a dead 
"sticky" feeling; it cannot be depended upon for wear. A 
certain amount is unobjectionable as it gives warmth, if not 
wear, and indeed is a commercial necessity, as there is not 
enough pure wool in the world to go around ! But the con- 
sumer must learn to protect herself and not pay a "wool" 
price for "shoddy." 


The woman who can fulfill the following requirements 
may be classed as an intelligent buyer of textiles : 

1. Know the appropriate kind of cloth to be used for 
the occasion, considering weave, color and design. 

2. Know what she can afford to pay for it. 

3. Know what she should be able to get for that sum of 

4. Know whether the material she purchases is what 
it is represented to be. 

There is a great tendency to be lured by the swiftly chang- 
ing fashions into spending more for clothing than the income 
justifies. Some women prefer a number of inexpensive gar- 
ments following the fashions and designs of the hour, while 
others prefer a few well made garments of beautiful ma- 
terial in conservative style to use for two or three years. 


The first class of women sacrifice quality of material and 
workmanship to faddish styles few have enough money to 
extravagantly squander beautiful material on extreme 
gowns ; the second class sacrifice the latest skirt and sleeve 
to the beauty of color and line so pleasing to the individual 
and to others. Needless to say the second class of women 
on the whole appear better dressed. Where growing chil- 
dren have no brothers or sisters to wear their outgrown 
clothes, inexpensive materials are justified. 

Having decided the kind of clothes wanted (inexpensive, 
up-to-the-minute in style, and many of them, or expensive, 
conservative, and few in number), consider next economy 
in clothing from the standpoint of time and money which 
must be spent in construction or workmanship. It may be 
economy for mothers and daughters to make their own cloth- 
ing, or have the clothing made at home with the seasonal aid 
of a visiting dressmaker, paid by the day. In estimating the 
true economy of these plans one must consider the free 
time and plus energy of the individual. Can the schedule 
be planned so that the household will run smoothly for the 
other members of the family during this period? Is the 
time required, justified by the results and money saved, or 
could it be more profitably used in other lines ? 

Many busy women who do not find it profitable to sew rely 
entirely on the department stores or mail order houses as a 
means of saving time and nervous energy. If they can be 
fitted in the regulation sizes all is well but much refitting 
defeats their purpose, is unsatisfactory as a rule and also 
expensive. Those who can not be fitted easily at the de- 
partment stores turn to high class tailors or dressmakers for 
two or three gowns a year which last several seasons with 
little repair or alteration. Based on the number of years of 
wear of the garment the average expenditure of such a plan 
is not excessive. Some combine all of these methods work- 


ing out their own budget of money and time expenditure to 
suit their particular needs. 


Whatever the plan followed it is extremely desirable to 
work out a dress budget as it alone helps one to see the dress 
problem clearly and see it as a whole. 

A dress budget is best based on a three-year average. The 
expenditure for one year may exceed the allowance but 
thru continued use of the articles in successive years the aver- 
age may be maintained. In this connection the importance 
of keeping the clothing repaired and pressed for results in 
long service, can be easily seen. According to the budgets in 
Part 7, 14% is the average amount for clothing. As women's 
clothes usually cost more than men's assume that y$ of 
this amount may be used by the women and J/$ by the man. 


After determining the amount of money which can be 
expended, consider next the social or business demands 
which must provide for; then, list the occasions for 
which clothes must be planned such as church, afternoon 
and evening affairs, theatre, office, street, afternoons at 
home, morning work dresses, etc. That dress is the most 
economical which is appropriate to the greatest number of 
occasions. For instance a dressy waist with a tailored suit 
forms an acceptable costume for church, luncheons, theatre, 
informal afternoons; a light summer silk or lingerie gown 
can continue in use thruout the year as an evening party 
frock. Having listed the garments needed your present 
wardrobe must be reviewed, and the garments on hand 
checked off. The following dress budget is based on the 



purchase of all articles ready to wear. If the clothing listed 
here be purchased between seasons, better quality can be 
had for the same money or a greater number of garments 
can be supplied. 


Income, $1,500. Family, 2 adults. Clothing (14%), $210; ^ for 
woman = $140 per year. 


Suits, coats, waists, gowns. 

Suit for all seasons $25.00 $25.00 2 to 3 

Under jacket for extra 

warmth 2.00 3 to 4 

Waist, dressy 5 OD 5.00 2 

Waist, tailored 3.00 3.00 2 

Coat $25.00 2 to 3 

Reception gown (silk) .... 25.00 

Winter dress . 12.50 12.50 2 to 3 

Summer waists 

i dressy 4.00 2 

i common 2.50 2.50 2 

White wash skirt 5.00 .... 2 

Summer silk (light) or lin- 
gerie gown 20.00 20.00 2 to 3 

Summer coat 15.00 3 

Summer dresses 5.00 8.00 

Summer dresses 8.00 6.00 5.00 2 

House dresses 

i at $1.50 3.00 1.50 

1 at 2.00 2.00 i to 2 


2 at $0.50 i.oo .50 .50 i to 2 

Underclothing, winter under- 
wear 3 at $1.00 3.00 i.oo 2 to 3 

Summer vests 

4 at $0.25 i.oo .50 .50 2 

Combination suits 

2 crepes at $1.00 2.00 i.oo 2.00 2 

1 muslin at 1.50 1.50 1.50 


2 at $1.00 2.00 i.oo 2.00 ito2 


2 at 50 cents i.oo i.oo 2 


I at $1.50 

I at 3.00 4.50 4.50 4.50 





Silk for suit 3.50 3.50 


2 at $1.00 2.00 i.oo 2 to 3 

1 at 2.00 2.00 .... 


Oxfords 3.00 3.00 2 

Street shoes 5.00 5.00 5.00 I 

Dress shoes 8.00 8.00 8.00 I 

Room slippers 75 .... .... 4 

Rubbers 75 .75 2 

Slippers 4.00 2 


Winter (heavy) i.oo .... i.oo 2 

White kid 1.50 3 

2 pr. white washable at 6oc 1.20 .60 .60 i 
Winter, street (new or re- 
modeled) 5.00 i.oo 5.00 

Dress (new or remodeled) i.oo 8.00 i.oo 

Summer, street 5.00 i.oo 5.00 

Dress i.oo 8.00 i.oo 


Winter, 3 at 50 cents 1.50 i.oo 1.50 ito2 

Summer, 4 at 35 cents 1.40 1.05 1.40 ito2 

i at $1.00 i.oo i.oo i.oo i 

TOTAL $158.60 $116.15 $133.25 

Total of three years $408.00 

3 X $140.00 = $420.00, leaving $12.00 or $4.00 a year 
for handkerchiefs, repairs, cleaning and sundries. 

NOTE. Prices in this budget have no special significance the idea 
is to show the plan. 


The value of many ready made garments can be readily 
enhanced by adding a bit of hand embroidery, fine lace or a 
different collar. The woman who must economize on her 
clothing and yet wishes to dress well, must buy either gar- 
ments or materials between seasons. A great deal of time 
can be saved in shopping if the housewife can identify her- 
self with one clerk in the department, as the clerk knows 


the stock and soon will learn to fit it to the customer's taste 
and pocket book. Time of usual legitimate seasonal reduc- 
tion in clothing are as follows : 

After Thanksgiving fall articles on sale. 

First of the year winter articles on sale. 

First of February between seasons period of greatest reduction. 

Decoration Day spring articles on sale. 

Fourth of July summer articles on sale. 

First of September between seasons period of greatest reduction. 


Where the clothing budget of the mother must be divided 
with little children, or where she desires to have many gar- 
ments at less cost saving must be effected by making some 
articles at home. In general it may be said that outside 
clothing as suits and coats should be purchased, for their 
style depends entirely upon lines and tailoring. The more 
skilled the housewife is in designing and sewing fine clothing, 
the greater is her saving, as shown by the following table 
based on the clothing budget given. 

Saving where nothing 
ITEMS is paid for time 

Wash waists (which have hand work) 

Winter dress . 

Summer dresses 


Light summer silk or lingerie dress 


House dresses ] 

Aprons ( 20% to 30% 

Machine-made waists . .' J 

Underclothes $% to 15% 

Standard garments, such as housedresses, aprons, and 
underclothing which have no particular style, can be cut out 
by the hundred, and made by unskilled workers. As the style 
is not pronounced, a merchant can carry them over several 
seasons (unless soiled) so there is less loss in handling. All 
factors combine to make them cheaper, so that the busy 
housewife can little afford to spend her time on such items. 



Ready or home made as the garments may be, all need 
attention at some time in repairing and alteration, so every 
home needs a sewing corner, just as it needs a "business 

A 2j4-inch Wood Frame Covered with Cretonne. 

corner." If repairs and simple alterations alone are planned 
for, the simple equipment of a home-made sewing screen 
such as illustrated may be sufficient. The hooks and spindles 
provide places for all tools as scissors, hem gauge, darning 
ball, pin cushion, beeswax, and thread of different shades 
and numbers. The many pockets are arranged to hold find- 
ings, patterns, remnants, current work, and in one corner of 
the top shelf, pill-boxes of sliding variety with collar button 
punched through the front, make useful little drawers for 
buttons, snappers, hooks and eyes. Where home sewing is 
a regular part of the seasonal schedule, the following equip- 
ment should be added : 


1. Machine. 

2. Cutting board or table. 

3. Chair (right height). 

4. Lap board. 

5. Ample scrap basket. 

6. Dress form. 

7. Yard stick. 

8. Shelves for fashion magazines. 

9. Electric iron. 

10. Pressing board and cloth. 

11. Dress file. 

12. Good light. 

Electric Motor Attached; Made by Western Electric Co. Price, $45.00. 


The following form for dress file will be suggestive and 
prove particularly valuable where sewing is done for many 
members of the family : 

1. Samples of each standard fabric on a card with infor- 

mation of width, cost, guarantee, manufacturer, and 
dealer's name. 

2. Classified list and location of findings, kept on hand. 

3. For each member of the family : 

a. Dress budget plan. 

b. Measurements with date of taking. 

c. Sewing cost of each article. 

1. Cost of materials. 

2. Time required. 



Sewing is a seasonal occupation in many households and 
the complaint arises that sewing and housework do not fit 
together, and that the many interruptions make progress in 
the work difficult. True the regular schedule would have 
to be reduced to a minimum of simple meals, bed-making 
and simplest putting of the house in order, and the time of 
different sewing operations will have to be planned accord- 
ing to frequency and nature of interruptions, such as : 

Evening for cutting 

1. Least interrupted time, and 

2. Work does not strain the eyes. 
Morning for machine work 

Fewer unplanned for interruptions. 
Afternoon for handwork 

Can be continued during unexpected calls. 


Making a number of like garments at one time such as 
underwear, dresses, waists, and having a standard practice 
of procedure simplifies the work and reduces the total time. 

A. Preparatory. 

1. Test samples. 

2. Select pattern. 

1. Open each piece. 

2. Mark with make and number. 

3. Measure for required amount of material if 

allowance on pattern seems large. 

3. Buy material and finishing. 

4. Put pattern, material and finishing in a labeled box. 

5. Note costs in dress file. 


B. Cutting. 

1. Prepare equipment. 

Board, scissors, weights (better than pins), 
yard stick, French chalk. 

2. Lay goods and pattern. 

3. Cut. 

4. Baste or mark as necessary. 

C. Replace pattern and pieces in respective boxes. 

D. Work on all like articles at one time without change of 

shift as skirts, waists, sleeves, etc. 

1. All basting. 

2. All fitting on form. 

3. All seams. 

4. Remove basting. 

5. Final fitting. 

6. Do all like finishing, as buttonholes, snappers, 

hems, etc. 

7. Pressing. 

E. Replace each article in respective box as done and 

avoid confusion. 

The time study for each step will vary with the speed 
of the individual and the amount of work done, but making 
a study of dress making as with other work will give 
not only a valuable gauge for schedule calculations, but will 
show also whether the time spent in sewing is profitable in 
proportion to the saving of money. 


The buying of household tools and equipment has been 
taken up fully in a previous chapter (see Chap. Ill, pp. 100- 
108; also VI) ; the other needs which must be purchased 
for the home, may be divided into Furniture and Room fur- 


nishings ; Medical and Sanitary ; China, Glass and Silver ; 
Art and Musical Objects. 

Space does not permit going into each group in detail. 
It may be said, however, in regard to furniture : 

1. Buy a few pieces of good model, and the best work- 
manship rather than an assortment of poorly harmon- 
izing ones. 

2. Avoid those pieces which have high polish, and an 
excess of carving, "turned legs," etc., as they show soil 
and scratches more easily and require more work to 
keep them clean. 

3. Avoid buying "sets" or "suites" or "period" furniture 
when the home is neither large enough nor has the right 
setting for such furniture. 

4. Buy separate mirrors and drawers rather than typical 
"bureaus," because they can be more easily placed in 
different positions and rooms ; have as much of the 
furniture "built in," rather than of the portable type. 

5. Choose such models which permit easy cleaning under 
them, and which have such pillows, seats, etc., which are 
easy of care and inexpensive in restoration. 

6. In choosing beds a "box-spring" covered, is the most 
permanent and sanitary, and less likely to catch on 

7. The cost of an iron or enameled bed depends on the 
width and weight of the iron supports, and on the ar- 
rangement of the spring. Those beds with 'woven wire 
spring attached permanently to the framework, are 
more satisfactory than using a separate wire spring. 
See that the spring is reinforced by strands of cross 
wire so that it does not sag. 

8. Mattresses of laminated cotton are more sanitary, and 
distribute weight more evenly than those of horsehair. 
Ask to see a cross section of the filling before purchase. 



In every home there is need of certain sanitary articles 
and comforts bought from time to time. The point is that 
very few of these articles are planned in purchase, but are 
bought suddenly when emergency demands, with a result 
of either extravagant or inefficient buying, whose total is 
quite a sum out of the annual expenditure. A comfort like 
a hotwater bottle is best developed in an electrically heated 
pad if there is current in the home, or at least by an alumi- 
num bottle which cannot leak, or burst like the rubber bag. 
Grey agate ware sanitary utensils give better service and 
cost less than the same articles made of white enamel. Medi- 
cines should be kept away from light; the tri-sided poison 
bottle should be used to avoid danger. "Quantity" buying of 
gauze, absorbent cotton, etc., by the half or pound is much 
less expensive than buying small 10 and 15 cents' worth; 
large sizes of witch hazel, alcohol, bought by the pint, etc., 
toilet rolls bought by the dozen, and soap by the box where it 
can be unwrapped and laid to harden. In families with 
children the medicines or "emergency shelf" should be kept 
well stocked, where it is instantly accessible. All rubber 
tubing, etc., must not be used or left with oil and must be 
hung away to avoid bending and breakage. Care in keep- 
ing contents protected from air and dust, well corked, etc., 
will save as much as original careful estimation of pur- 


In buying chinaware it is wiser to buy from "open stock." 
This means a stock or pattern which the manufacturer and 
retailer have constantly on hand, as opposed to a "set" which 
is a pattern of which only a few "sets" are manufactured, 
and then discontinued. "Open stock" permits buying only 


a few dishes at a time, and allows easy replacement for 
breakage. Indeed it is always better to avoid the- lure of 
all "sets of 108 pieces complete," etc., because many of the 
pieces of such standard sets are used so seldom as to be poor 
investments ; i. e., the large turkey platter, the soup tureen, 
etc., can best be replaced by a more serviceable chop-plate 
or a less expensive casserole which can be used for other 
foods than soup alone. Staring or large and brightly colored 
patterns are tiring to the eye, do not set off the food attrac- 
tively, and do not harmonize with the other table appoint- 
ments. Avoid large handles and ornate knobs, which break 
easily and excess of gold-leaf, which comes off in the wash- 
ing after hard usage. Porcelain is the finest quality of 
ware, almost transparent when held to the light, and the 
most fragile. China is the medium weight grade of which 
most sets are made. Pottery is the coarsest ware, of which, 
however, beautiful pitchers, bowls, etc., are made. 

It is also not necessary to buy a "complete dozen" of each 
kind of plate, saucer, etc. For a small family, eight of each 
kind of flat dish seems to be adequate. A plate which will 
be suitable for both breakfast and supper, and salad can be 
chosen, and so avoid the endless number of sizes of plates 
with which the average "set" is burdened. One size sauce 
dish, or a shape that will do both for soup and cereal, again 
saves a multiplicity of dishes. The same points are true in 
regard to silver that simple pattern, good lines, and few 
pieces, give the table a better appearance than does an excess 
of elaborate encrusted ware, which also means more cleaning 
labor for the housekeeper. 


So many are the articles which might come under this 
head, that merely the general suggestions may be given, first, 
not to have too many of such extraneous objects as pictures, 


hangings, ornaments, since most American homes (and 
women buyers) delight in an excess of superfluous objects in 
the rooms objects which mar the general harmony, which 
are often of doubtful quality and ephemeral value, and 
which also lessen the amount of air in the room, not to 
mention the great labor they entail in cleaning. Long- 
trailing lace curtains, portieres, fringe, doilies, bric-a-brac 
are generally not wise investments. "Ten-cent store" buy- 
ing is a cause of unwise spending, and overcrowded, inartis- 
tic homes simplicity and permanent quality should be two 
watchwords in all buying of housefurnishings. 



1. Investigate (by telephone or better by visit) the price of 

flour, sugar, eggs, butter, potatoes, bacon and flank 
steak in all your local stores and sources of supply, on 
the same day, and report. 

(b) Hov^ do the sanitary conditions in the different 

stores compare? 

(c) What are your local laws, if any, on sanitary 

standards ? On weights and measures ? 

2. Tell of any experience you have had in purchasing food 

by (a) paicel post or express, (b) co-operative buy- 
ing or wholesale, (c) at public markets. 

3. Make out a table of at least ten items, giving the cost 

per 1,000 calories of food "as purchased," using your 
current prices. 

4. Give a recipe and calculate (a) the total number of cal- 

ories it contains, (b) the total cost and (c) the cost 
per 1,000 calories. 

5. The dress problem what seems the best solution under 

your conditions? Have you ever used a "dress 




THERE are approximately 22 million families in the 
United States; of this number, 92%, according to 
1910 estimates, employ no permanent servants. Fig- 
ures compiled now would undoubtedly show an even higher 
percentage ; war conditions abroad have almost entirely cut 
off the stream of immigrant labor from which servants were 
formerly recruited; war conditions in this country have so 
disorganized industry that women are replacing men in 
shops and factories which offer such high wages as to tempt 
many professional servants away from all branches of 
housework into these wartime occupations. 

Employment agencies in Eastern states have requests 
for four times as many applicants as they can find 
even at wages a third to a half higher than at a period 
" before the war." The demand is so much greater than 
the supply that even responsible workers are shifting and 
unreliable. It is even more difficult almost impossible, to 
secure household help on farms and in isolated suburban 
sections, as workers prefer town amusements and city living 

It is probable that the situation will not improve, but 
that there will be a still greater shortage of professional 
resident servants during the succeeding years. 



The average homemaker is therefore faced with the 
necessity of doing all her own housework, or depending on 
such outside assistance and agencies as will enable her to 
manage her home without permanent or " resident " serv- 
ice. But this should not be regarded by her as a situation 
to be deplored, but as an opportunity to manage her home 
according to her own highest standards of thrift, efficiency, 
sanitation, and family happiness. 


There is a very strong case against the presence of the 
permanent worker in the home. First, there is the responsi- 
bility and psychological adjustment which she forces on the 
homemaker, and on the entire family. Even if she is a 
trained worker (and how seldom she is!) the employer, 
in addition to the strain of seeing that the worker carries 
out her directions and plans, feels responsibility as to 
whether the worker is " satisfied," if she has sufficient pri- 
vate life after hours, if her goings out and her comings in 
are as they should be, if things in the house are adjusted 
to please her. In other words, there is usually considerable 
tension between the worker on one side and the family on 
the other. 

In many cases, the standard of the home is consciously 
or unconsciously made less simple or adapted to the expec- 
tations and demands of the worker. This is particularly 
true in the case of meals ; it is a common occurrence to find 
the cook, hired man or houseworker dissatisfied with the 
simpler kind of food with which the family itself would be 
quite content. Again, hundreds of intelligent, progressive 
housekeepers have ideas of continuous efficiency, thrift, 
and management which it is impossible for them to get 
their servants to follow. The result is that the home is 


not managed so much according to the standards the home- 
maker would like to have set, as according to the ineffi- 
ciency, waste and lower standards of a constantly shifting 
and generally low-grade worker. 

Further, what is the actual cost of a permanent worker? 
She receives a cash wage ; in addition she represents (which 
many homemakers fail to include) a cash expenditure for 
food, room, light, furnishings, heat, breakage, wear and 
tear. She also creates more work in the family, merely by 
living in it i. e., her dishes, the washing of her clothes, 
etc., all of which must be estimated in her exact cost. It 
is a fair average to figure that a servant costs double her 
wages; a worker costing $25 in wages costs actually $50 
in cash, and that each additional worker costs 20% more. 
A professor of nutrition writes that each servant represents 
a cost of at least $4 weekly for food alone. 

Added to this, her general lack of thrift brings her total 
cost startlingly high $600 to $1,000 or more a year. In 
other words, whether she likes to admit it or not, the home- 
maker is paying a high price (perhaps even more than the 
price of efficient day or hour help) for transient, inefficient 
permanent help. 


Wages (general housekeeper, to housekeeper) $25-$45 a month 

Board (men servants, about one-third more) 16- 25 " " 

Room (weekly, $i-$3) 4- 12 " " 

Light and fuel 3- 5 " 

Breakage and waste (weekly, $i-$3) 4- 12 " " 

Total $52-$99 " " 


Bed, mattress, blanket, etc $25 

Bureau or chiffonier 10 

Two chairs 5 

Table 4 

Rug 5 

Servant's room and bath $2,000 



The servantless household (by "servantless" is meant 
without resident workers) offers the only real opportunity 
for a family to follow the exact standards it wishes and to 
carry out its ideals regardless of adjustment to any other 
persons. Again, it offers the homemaker the one chance 
of putting into practice her progressive sanitary knowl- 
edge, the use of improved machinery, and efficient home 
management. Further, it enables her to practice thrift and 
economy, and to know that every dollar she spends for 
service goes for actual work done, and not for waste or 
additional " overhead." Last, and most important of all, 
the servantless household enables a family cooperation and 
a chance for the training of children that makes for the 
highest value, and which can never possibly be secured 
under the constant presence of hired workers 


It may be well for the woman who is the executive head 
of the servantless household to turn back to the " Intro- 
duction " (page 9) and re-read the twelve principles of 
efficiency. There she will see " Ideals " given as the first 
principle. To make a success of managing a home by her- 
self it is necessary, above all, to have the right point of 
view about her work. She must want to run a home, and 
see that its various tasks offer scope for her best intelligence, 
effort and study. 

The reason, perhaps, why many women " doing their 
own work " regard housekeeping as distasteful, is that they 
merely " married into housekeeping," and are constantly 
regretting that they can't afford a servant, or thinking of 
teaching or office work which they would prefer to do, or 


envying women who do nothing except try to amuse them- 
selves. No one ever made a success of any enterprise which 
he was constantly disparaging in his own mind. It is most 
important that the homemaker of the servantless home see 
all its advantages for family cooperation and child training, 
and the chance it is for her to show to the community in 
her homemaking, her executive ability, her expression of 
what a home in the highest sense should be. Here is her 
best chance to be " A productive citizen of the State, not a 
social debtor." Ellen H. Richards. 

One of the first elements of this right point of view will 
be to get rid of the idea that her particular family or house 
must be run according to arbitrary standards, set up by 
friends or the community. Another is to refuse to attempt 
to run a home without service in the same way or on the 
same scale as a house which has permanent help. 

If in a particular family it seems best only to wash 
dishes once a day, or if it should make for family happiness 
to do the laundry work on Thursday, instead of Monday; 
or if certain kinds of meals are preferred other than the 
conventional ones, let the homemaker follow these or what- 
ever methods conduce to the efficient management of her 
particular home, regardless of tradition, or what is sup- 
posed to be the " proper " way. Too many women doing 
their own housework are slaves of routine and tradition, 
and put the work itself first, and the true comfort and 
development of the family, and justice to their own health 
and interests, second. 

One woman with the right viewpoint has her week so 
planned that she neither cooks nor cleans on Saturday, but 
devotes it to her three small boys who are home from 
school, taking them to museums, the zoo, and other places 
of educational interest, since this is the only day they can 
go- How much better than the plan which "must" put 


baking day on Saturday ! (and leaves the children to run 
loose around the neighborhood). 

Another wise woman arranges her Sunday with buffet 
or tray meals pre-cooked the day before, so that she, also, 
has a " day of rest " and can spend more time with hus- 
band and children than if she follows the usual hot mid-day 
dinner which means incarceration in the kitchen the whole 
forenoon. The woman managing the servantless house- 
hold has the widest field for ingenuity, for originality, for 
running a home with the greatest freedom and service to 
her family. 


The servantless household offers a wide opportunity 
for training and educating children. Unfortunate indeed 
are those children in homes of wealth where the cook will 
not allow them in the kitchen, or where the children are so 
waited upon that their initiative and responsibility are not 
developed. As a very prominent and successful man said 
to the author recently, " The greatest loss to society is the 
disappearance of the family woodpile." He meant by this 
that the child who has chores to do and who shares in the 
many small tasks of the home will receive training in the most 
important point of co-ordinating motor and mental tasks, 
as in making beds, learning to cook, doing small cleaning 
tasks, etc. Indeed, the modern educator with his Mon- 
tessori and similar systems is only trying to give back to the 
child in school what he formerly (and still could) learn in 
the various small manual tasks of the home. But, further, 
if there is one thing more than another that will teach chil- 
dren the ethics, the spiritual side and beauty of home life, 
it is to enlist their co-operation with the mother in doing 
home tasks, and making them feel " this is my home, too" 

Each child in the servantless home should have its defi- 


nite daily and weekly tasks. Older boys may care for 
furnace or stove, clean rugs, and similar work; girls can 
cook and clean, and even the smallest empty a wastepaper 
basket or " pick up." Children of eight or over can be held 
accountable for making their own bed, picking up their 
night clothes and leaving a room " tidy." 

If housework is presented to them with the right point 
of view, children regard it as a privilege, rather than a duty, 
and are eager to " help." No mistake is more fatal than 
to keep children from doing work because the mother can 
" do it so much better myself." How will she ever 
expect skill if she does not permit a period of inexperience 
and practice? How many girls there are who have said 
that they did not know anything about housekeeping, be- 
cause when they were small their mothers prevented them? 

It is the author's feeling that there should be no sex 
discrimination in such tasks that boys should cook simple 
dishes, and at least darn and sew buttons, and that girls 
should share in the mechanical jobs with hammer and saw. 

Older children taking manual training in school can assist 
by making simple labor-savers like shoeblacking or sewing 
stand, coal box on castors, etc., the making of which will 
round out their school instruction and be an incentive 
because they will see their handiwork actually used by the 

But whatever the task or work, it should be definite, 
provided for in the schedule with its due reward or repri- 
mand. It should not be a constant nagging to do all kinds 
of running and errands so that the child comes to hate his 
share instead of like it. A child should not be made a 
"body servant'' he should have his rights as well as his 
duties. Here as in all child training "An ounce of example 
is worth more than a pound of precept." 

From present indications it would seem as if the struggle 


for living is going to be even much harder for our children 
than it is for ourselves today. Economists and moralists 
point out to us that many of the serious modern problems of 
extravagance, divorce, etc., arise largely because young 
people, girls especially, have not been trained in home man- 
agement, or in ideals of thrift and home life. No " domes- 
tic science training," however good, taken in later years, 
can replace this early dexterity in manual tasks, or the 
instilling ideals as to the point of view of the worthwhile- 
ness of normal, inter-co-operative home life of parents and 


In some households where there is no permanent worker, 
it often happens that the homemaker looks to the husband 
as a kind of nursemaid, choreman or kitchen assistant. The 
author's feeling is very much against this view, that the 
moment a man comes into the house he should be asked to 
carry out the slops, hold the baby or wash the dishes. If 
the father works hard and faithfully at his task of earning 
money during his work day, it is not more fair to ask him 
to turn choreman as soon as he comes home, than it would 
be to ask the woman who has cooked and cleaned all day 
to turn around and do office or business work after five 
o'clock. It is not fair to put on a father any housework 
duties ; his hours at home should be hours of recuperation, 
or so that he can study his own work, become more pro- 
ficient, and thus secure advancement or a better economic 

There comes to mind the case of a gifted man starting 
a profession, who, because of his wife's poor management, 
spent his time after office hours caring for the children and 
doing chores. He never seemed to " get on " as far as people 
had expected. Would it not have been better to use his 


spare time studying and improving in his own profession 
and thus be eventually able to pay for more service to help 
his wife, than to neglect his own opportunities by doing 
the housework? 

There are other ways in which father can be of more 
true assistance, one is in being satisfied with simple stand- 
ards, and especially simple meals and table service. It 
has been found too often that unnecessary work for the 
housekeeper has been made because the tastes of the men of 
the family were capricious. One husband, for instance, 
always refused to eat " made dishes " of any kind ; another 
did not think he had a good meal unless pie of some sort 
was included; other brothers wouldn't eat anything but 
roasts, demanding constant watching at the stoves, etc., etc. 
Sunday is the hardest day in the week for many women 
largely because their families demand (or are in the habit 
of having) an extra fancy hot noon dinner, when such a 
dinner could easily be taken Saturday night, and only simple 
buffet meals taken Sunday which would allow the house- 
keeper, like the others, to enjoy one day of rest. 

Many of such habits on the part of the family make the 
housekeeping harder, but can easily be changed by a little 
helpful co-operative spirit and willingness to see a new 
viewpoint. In one home where Sunday breakfast usually 
was dragged on from seven until nearly ten by different 
members on whom the mother waited, a newer plan was 
followed by setting four separate trays on the dining table 
complete for each one with fruit, prepared cereal, and 
glass of milk. As each came down, he ate his trayful, then 
carried it out and washed and laid away those few things 
himself, thus doing away with any long-standing and un- 
tidy table and waiting. The ideal should be not to do any- 
thing or leave anything untidy that will make some other 
member of the family do needless personal service. 


Again, he may by suggestions from his business, assist 
her in her finances and budget making. If he is a " handy " 
man he may occasionally turn his tools to make some shelf, 
repair, or device to save her labor. Some men enjoy cook- 
ing and doing other household tasks once in a while, and 
any man may be expected to help out in case of illness or 
special emergency, but father's share is not in being a chore- 
boy housekeeping the woman's job and she has no right to 
burden the man with it. 


The first step in managing the servantless household is 
to sit down and study carefully the conditions you must 
meet in your particular family and home. Get them down 
in writing ! What are the " must-be's " of the problem the 
maximum money you can spend for outside service, the 
unalterable construction of the house you live in, the inex- 
orable needs of a baby or small children? At what hour, 
and what kind of meals must be served, when can you best 
do the marketing, when will be the best time for a " rest 
period " for yourself, or for outside or social interests ? 
How can you save steps, time, effort and fuel and run the 
home at the lowest expenditure and yet carry out your 

This takes us back particularly to what is given on 
" Schedules." All that has been said in previous lessons 
will bear re-reading. For instance, it is of the first impor- 
tance that the woman doing her own work have her kitchen 
arranged in the most step-saving manner, with heights of 
table, sink, etc., to suit her own comfort, and utensils placed 
and grouped where they will entail fewest steps in assem- 
bling or laying away. A high stool for work, adequate light, 
ventilation and both floor and work surfaces that are easy 
to keep clean will make the kitchen work done in shorter 


time with greater pleasure. Extra touches of decoration 
in plants or bowl of flowers, in curtains with stencil on 
them, in the use of ornamental as well as useful casseroles, 
will make the kitchen as charming a place to stay in as any 
other room in the house. 

In addition, the woman doing her own work should have 
some sort of "comfort corner" (or "business corner") 
near the kitchen, preferably a screened portion of a porch 
or hall, where she can have an easy chair, a shelf for books, 
etc., where she can sit down while in work clothes and take 
a few minutes' relaxation. One such corner was developed 
near a window seat and a wash basin in the rear hall. Here 
was kept a shelf with mirror, cold cream for hands, and 
means of " freshening up " before going to the door. Clean 
aprons, a few magazines, a purse of money, the telephone 
and also the household account books and bill file made this 
just the corner to sit down and take a few minutes' rest 
while at the same time entering some bill or other item. 

What is said on planning and dispatching (Part II) on 
marketing and planning meals in advance (Part V) will be 
especially helpful. For after making the thorough " sur- 
vey " (as one might call it) of the special conditions in any 
particular home, as suggested above, the next step is to work 
out such schedules as will best suit those conditions, both 
weekly and daily, experimenting with them until they ap- 
proach a " standard " that seems to do the greatest justice 
to the work and to the family's comfort. Buying in quan- 
tity, marketing seldom, cooking in concentrated periods for 
several meals, are all ways to short-cut waste time and 
motion, and the chapters dealing especially with these points 
should be studied over again and applied. 

It will be distinctly " up to " the housekeeper herself 
whether she saves steps or the reverse. Too much energy 
supposed to be spent in actual housework is quite commonly 


dissipated in running up and down stairs (how many times 
a day?), hunting for the needed receipt, walking about the 
back yard, or just pure sitting around or neighborhood 
" visiting." You must work to have leisure ! 

To save running up and down, have enough money 
downstairs to pay all small amounts that may be presented, 
lay articles to be carried up on the stairs to be taken up by 
the first goer, and not run up especially. Don't make a 
special trip to carry out the garbage, unless you can also do 
some other outside chore, etc. Read most carefully the 
pages on grouping of tools, foods, and sitting down to work 
(page 29 et seq.). If you have a 'phone, kindly ask friends 
or local calls to be made only within definite most conve- 
nient periods or have an extension 'phone upstairs. In 
many houses a most startling amount of time is wasted in 
useless 'phoning. Above all, work on schedule, as it will 
save you more energy and time than you will believe. 

Remember, too, that you should have definite rest periods 
as well as work periods (see Part II). Emphasize the 
importance of " beating your own record " and making 
time-studies of each particular task. The housekeeper in 
the servantless home has widest opportunity to make origi- 
nal kitchen and housework time-studies. Where does the 
time go? How long does it take you to make the beds? 
How long to clean the downstairs rooms? Do you wash 
dishes three times a day, or only once ? Why ? There is a 
peculiar prejudice among some women that dishes must be 
washed after every meal. Now, with a family of not more 
than two to four, it is far more efficient to wash the dishes 
of two meals together. The time covered by the whole 
work of dishwashing is very largely consumed, not 
in actual washing, but in the " clearing up," the scouring 
the sink, etc. If dishes are well scraped, and stacked, in 
the dish pan or even in the sink itself, fitted with a broad 


stopper, and covered with warm or tepid water, the dishes 
of two meals (except the solid silver) can be done in one- 
third less time than if two batches are made of it. When a 
dishwasher is used, it is even practical to wash the dishes 
of all three meals at once, having stacked and soaked them 
in the washer previously. 

Many of the schedules sent in by students of this course 
have been particularly interesting and excellent, but no two 
are alike. You are the only one who can draw up a suc- 
cessful working schedule for yourself, under your special 
conditions, and you cannot plan your best schedule in a 
week or a month or one year even. Also, you will have to 
constantly modify and adjust your schedules to changing 
conditions, if need be. 

The general tendency is to make the schedule too elabo- 
rate to raise standards of cleanliness, complexity of meals, 
etc. This is often a wrong standpoint, especially for the 
servantless household. It is quite possible to keep the 
house too clean, when there is only one pair of hands to do 
the work, and to neglect other more important interests. 
Housekeeping should never be an end in itself. Work for 
a minimum schedule ; try to simplify, not to complicate. For 
example, if each member of the family leaves the bathroom 
as he found it, daily cleaning should not be necessary; in 
some localities and in some families, weekly cleaning of the 
living room will keep it in good condition. 

While some of the special cleaning needs to be done 
every week, much other work needs to be taken care of 
only once a month, such as window cleaning, high dusting, 
beating of rugs. These things should be provided for 
in the schedule, but divided so that no one week is over- 
crowded. Mothers with little children find it difficult to 
plan a working schedule. Here a margin of time over that 
required in the " time studies " must be allowed. One 


mother with children of two and five finds that a margin 
of ten minutes on the hour is sufficient to meet their many 
small demands. 

One housekeeper writes : " I have found my schedule 
a great help until the spring sewing, gardening and yard 
work all came at once to upset it. Then everything had to 
be brushed aside and I hurried from morning till night in 
the old way." Here is just where a schedule should prove 
most useful. The minimum schedule, even, should be sim- 
plified, especially the meal preparation, so that free time is 
cleared each day. This free time may then be given to the 
planned seasonable tasks. 

The following suggestions may be helpful in planning 
seasonable work which, of course, will vary somewhat in 
each family: 

January Household linens, supplies or furnishings. 

February Undergarments. 

March Spring clothing. 

April Spring clothing and gardening. 

May Garden and housecleaning. 

June Garden and canning. 

July Garden and canning. 

August Canning and vacation. 

September Fall clothing. 

October Fall clothing. 

November Housecleaning. 

December Holiday preparations. 

A busy mother finds that her sewing progressed easily 
if she planned and cut at night, did all possible fitting and 
machine work in the morning hours and saved the hand- 
work for the afternoon. By this plan she was able to give 
about six hours a day to sewing for a few days. 

A number have written that they find it easier to plan 
menus and to market twice a week rather than only once. 
One, for example, markets Friday for Friday dinner, thru 
Sunday to Monday night and on Tuesday thru to Friday. 



Labor-saving equipment is more justifiable and profit- 
able in the servantless household than in any other. It is 
right that the woman without permanent service should 
invest in every device she can afford which will really 
save her own manual effort and time. Also, the woman 
doing her own work is so much more intelligent than the 
average hired worker, that she can get far better results 
with equipment requiring skill and understanding. Indeed, 
as a general rule, labor-saving equipment is almost useless 
in the hands of the servant of whom mistresses constantly 
complain, " She will not use a bread-mixer," or a " fire- 
less," or some other device. 

The author confesses, regretfully, that in her own home 
an excellent ironing machine, gas iron, fireless cooker, dish- 
washer and washing machine stand unused by any save her- 
self more than one worker (and that, too, of education, 
and more than 15 years' experience in managing homes of 
their own) refusing to be " bothered " with " new-fangled " 
ideas, even preferring a hand washboard and knuckle rub- 
bing hours to an excellent rocking type washer, and asking 
if she could lay aside the most efficient dish drainer and 
substitute an old tin tray on which to lay the dishes ! 

Too many housekeepers have somewhat this same atti- 
tude a feeling that " mother's way (or grandmother's way) 
is good enough for me." What success or progress would 
a storekeeper or professional man or farmer make who has 
this attitude? It does take some time and patience and 
study to learn to use labor-saving household equipment 
effectively and it is easier to continue in the " old ways," 
without progress ; but is this not an indication of mental 
stagnation and a sign of old age? 

Other housekeepers spend much money for new equip- 


ment in the vague hope that it will make the housework go 
easier and are disappointed to find that it does not help 
much. Perhaps the appliance is not suitable, perhaps not 
enough time and patience is given to mastering it and often 
the appliance is not cared for properly ; it gets " out of 
kilter," so it is discarded and the money spent for it is 
wasted. Time studied will show clearly what appliances 
and changes are most needed. (Read Part III "Helpful 
Household Tools" again.) 

The purchase of such equipment may be looked upon as 
so much money expended for service. For instance, if a 
washing machine enables two days' work to be done in one, 
then its cost may be balanced up or credited against the 
wages of a day laundress. The cost of a dish-washer, bread- 
mixer or other useful device can all be bought with what- 
ever appropriation the homemaker has for " temporary " 
or day service. The exact labor-saving tools which should 
be bought will depend on the particular home, fuel, and con- 
ditions. But it may be said generally, that the servantless 
household will get the most benefit from such equipment as 
the fireless or pressure cooker, or stoves having ovens based 
on the fireless or insulated principle ; from the dishwasher, 
from a power washing machine, from the ironing machine, 
from paper products, from some form of portable tray on 
wheels for serving and clearing meals, and from a utility 
motor with various attachments. 

A resident servant costs $600 a year or more; if with 
labor-saving equipment and part time expert service, one- 
half this expense is saved, that will amout to $300. This 
represents an investment of $2,000 with interest and depre- 
ciation at 15 per cent. This sum is very much greater than 
need be spent for all the equipment that could be used, so 
there is no question of the economy in replacing the human 
by the mechanical servant. 


"But," you say, "I have no money to spend on equip- 
ment." Little money is needed to make a good beginning. 
The U. S. Department of Agriculture has an excellent Bul- 
letin which will be sent on request " Home-Made Fireless 
Cookers and Their Use " ; also descriptions of home-made 
wheel tray, iceless refrigerator, etc. More often it is lack 
of enterprise rather than lack of money which stands in the 
way of a more conveniently arranged kitchen and labor- 
saving equipment. 



The device or cooking equipment operated by electricity 
is also most worthwhile where the intelligent homemaker 
herself uses it. It is generally unsafe to trust the common 
grade of household worker with the costly and delicate appa- 
ratus of electric cooking, or expect her to understand and 
use it economically. On the other hand, in the servantless 
household much labor may be saved by using extensively 
the percolator, table stove and table warming units in meal 
preparation ; and by depending entirely on electric cooking 
(where the current cost justifies it), as it will mean a clean, 
cooler kitchen with no waste heat or combustion products as 
ashes, soot or smoke, to make further cleaning labor for 
the homemaker. 

The expense of a general utility motor with its many 
attachments such as coffee grinder, parer, silver buffer, 
mixer, etc., would be excellently justified, and act as a 
" silent servant " for innumerable uses. There is now on 
the market a fairly low price motor which may be attached 
to bread mixer, chopper, etc., thus replacing much hand 
labor. Other electrically operated equipment, such as vacuum 
cleaner, washer and dishwasher, will replace a large share 
of the work usually done by a permanent servant. Indeed, 



it may be said, that " the one way out "of the servant 
problem in the future is the much wider use of power and 
machinery in the home. The servantless household will 
have to become more of a mechanical household, where 
every possible purely manual task is done by arms of steel 
or knuckles of copper. 


Will Operate all Ordinary Appliances on Hand. Made by Reynolds 
Electric Co. 

And in the future it is believed that such machinery will 
be far more unified than at present. That is, instead of 
such small devices made by different firms and bought sepa- 
rately, there should be a larger installation or " system " 
(scientifically) planned for a specific kitchen, with the 
various pieces related to one another. No efficient lunch- 
room or hotel kitchen today, for instance, is fitted out by 
the manager by buying a kitchen table here, a stove there, 
sink there, a potato-pafer off in another corner; the equip- 
ment he buys is (if up-to-date), all related, and made ac- 
cordingly as it shall be placed scientifically to permit of the 
best "routing" of work from step to step. It is generally 


also of the same finish, same design and so matched as to 
avoid any grooves, cracks, etc. Similarly the home kitchen 
will have to be made efficient in the future, with labor-saving 
equipment standardized and related by a definite system of 
work, not placed as at present, according to the whim of the 
owner, or accordingly as some architect happens to leave 
space for it. 


After having made out a general workplan, with sched- 
ules for day and week as suggested above and in Part II, 
according to the conditions of your particular family, after 
having installed such labor-saving devices as seem to be 
most useful in those particular conditions, the next step is 
to work out standard practice or the best and shortest way 
to do certain kinds or divisions of work. The most fre- 
quently recurring work is the preparation and clearing 
away of meals how can this be made more efficient for 
the woman doing her own work? Briefly, by the following 
suggestions and summary : 

1. Understand food values so that as nourishing and attrac- 

tive meals may be obtained from a few courses as 
from many complicated dishes. 

2. Market in quantity and plan meals in advance, thus sav- 

ing being "out" of articles, and wasted time in too 
frequent marketing. 

3. Cook in concentrated periods for more than one meal at 

a time. (See page 193, Part V.) 

4. Prepare bulk of evening meal in the forenoon. 

5. Reduce time spent in "pot-watching" by use of fireless, 

pressure cooker, or insulated oven stoves. 


6. Adopt a simple table service without service plate and 

elaborate usages. 

7. Make use of table and self-service cooking devices; 

i. e.j electric table stove, percolator, grill, etc. 

8. Use a portable tray on wheels for easy service and re- 

moval of dishes. 

9. Use "self-server" table device for easy serving at table. 

10. Make frequent use of paper products to save dishwash- 

ing labor ; also casseroles, glass dishes, etc. 

11. Have many "tray" or buffet meals, especially at lunch, 

and in summer. (These can be set, individual style, 
in the kitchen and carried to any room or porch with- 
out setting formal table.) 

12. Set table at night for breakfast, without putting dishes 

back into pantry. 

13. Always utilize the time spent in dishwashing, in over- 

seeing some form of "pot-watching" or cooking, thus 
lessening the time needed for staying in the kitchen 
for cooking only. 

14. Wash dishes but once daily, if possible, or at most only 


The serving of meals can be accomplished gracefully 
and with ease, even without a servant. Some form of port- 
able wheel tray and either warming disks or electric plate 
warmer or disk stove turned at "low" heat, and platters 
with covers are needed. The tray should stand at the left of 
the hostess. On its lower surface, place the warming disks 
on which the hot roast, vegetables, or other hot dishes may 
be kept covered and warm until needed. On the top tray 
place salad, cold dessert, extra silver, water and small ac- 
cessories. Reserve the middle tray foV setting on the soiled 
plates as they are taken from the table. By having the 
table all set, accessories ready, the serving tray so planned, 


and the first soup or meat course on the table when the 
meal is announced, it will not be necessary for anyone to 
rise from the table to serve during the course of the meal, 
unless the family is very large; then it is often possible to 
have the removal of plates done by older children, one taking 
one course, the other the next. The reason meals without 
a servant are frequently interrupted with rising and con- 
fusion is not that it must be so, but because there has not 


been sufficient planning, and "standardization" of the serv- 
antless meal in advance. 

In many cases, where the dining table has a large 
enough diameter it is practical to use in the middle 
of the table a "revolving susan" or circular glass 
tray mounted on a revolving stand, which will ac- 
commodate butter, relishes, etc. ; but its greatest 
value lies in assisting the host to pass dishes to each 
person to be served. Set the plate of food on the server, 
give slight touch, and it will revolve to the person desired, 
thus doing away with awkward passing from one to another. 
Similarly the server may be used for removing the soiled 
plates, by each person laying their soiled plate in turn on the 


server and whirling to the hostess, who will then remove 
them unobtrusively to the lower tray of the portable tray at 
her left. 

If a crumb brush and tray are placed at hand on the tray, 
it is an easy and also graceful matter for the hostess to 
remove crumbs from her own place, and pass to each in turn. 
After the meal is finished, every article but the linen may 
be piled on the portable tray and wheeled to the kitchen to 
sort and wash. 



The first requisite, perhaps, in making cleaning work as 
simple as possible is for the homemaker to have a new point 
of view about the furnishings in her home. Dozens of let- 
ters have come to the author bewailing the amount of clean- 
ing necessary and the time taken, and how tired out the 
homemaker became because of the daily recurring work. 
Now actual visits (on lecture trips) into many such homes 
have disclosed the fact that altho the homemaker was doing 
all or most of her own work, the furnishings in her home 
were such as to require the daily upkeep of one parlor maid, 
if not two ! It cannot be said too plainly that no efficiency 
methods will help, if, in the first place, the home is cluttered 
and crowded with ornaments, portieres, bric-a-brac and ex- 
cess furnishings. If there is only the one pair of hands 
to do all of the housework, it is physically impossible for 
them to be adequate to a heavy cleaning burden, without 
resulting in overtaxed strength. 

Long lace curtains merely catch dust and require more 
time to "pin" than scrim or net curtains of sill length ; plate- 
rails loaded with dishes and ornaments make the room hotter 
and smaller as well as being a joy to the Dust Demon; 
portieres, pillows with fringe, elaborate doilies and scarf 
covers, too many small articles lying around on the tables 


and sideboards all make for confusion and unending work. 
Too often rooms have a profusion of small novelties and 
curios scattered on mantel, shelf, or tables, which rightly 
belong only in a glass-doored closet, where they will be 
both safe and clean, and not cause such excessive handling. 
One of the greatest of American failings is to purchase too 
many "things" which are often neither truly beautiful or 
useful. The homemaker doing her own work, must first 
of all incorporate into her efficiency point of view, that the 
house with few and simple furnishings will not only be, 
after all, the truly most restful, attractive and artistic home, 
but from the work point of view, the home that requires less 
time, less labor and less cost in upkeep and care. Get rid of 
the junk. 

It will be well to re-read Part IV on cleaning and pay 
special attention to the point of trying to "route" the clean- 
ing work to the best advantage in your particular home. 
Properly "routed" work will save at least 20 per cent of 
waste effort and time. Then again comes the need, men- 
tioned before, of having a definite place for cleaning tools, 
and for keeping them in efficient condition. 

It may also be said that here is one of the places where 
family co-operation may score heavily much of the so- 
called cleaning is actually only endless "pick-up" of cloth- 
ing, toys, and other articles. If each person, and child 
especially, is responsible for and shares in this work of 
"straightening" whatever newspapers, table top, playthings, 
etc., have been used, 50 per cent of the cleaning will 
be done. One very charming family is recalled, where 
before leaving the living-room for the night, each member 
"picks up" the library table in order, straightens the pillows, 
brushes in the hearth ashes, and sets the chairs straight ; it 
is but the work of a moment for each, but how much better 
than for all to leave the room upset and unsightly, where it 



might require twenty minutes' time of one worker (if there 
is one) next morning. 

If the income provides for outside service, part of it 
may be spent with the greatest advantage on forms of day 
cleaning service. A competent cleaning woman in one day of 
eight solid hours of work, will go thru a seven-room house, 
thoroly and completely, except the fine dusting or bureau 
t top arranging, which would take the permanent worker 
most of two days, and then not be done so well. 

An electric vacuum cleaner may be rented for about 
50 cents per hour, to be operated by the homemaker or one 
of the family ; or less frequently a man and his own large 
apparatus may be employed to give the rugs, draperies, and 
walls a thoro going over, at from $3 to $5 a day, depending 
on the locality. Windows may be washed by professionals 
at about 10 cents each. By thus expending a small amount 
on expert cleaning service at stated intervals, the daily 
cleaning in the servantless household should be reduced to 
a minimum, especially if the family co-operates well in 
"picking up after itself." 

When there are small children in the household, they 
should have their own playroom, if possible, with the rule 
not to bring toys into the living-room. If they have their 
own play-table, shelves and window seats, they will less 
likely be blamed for upsetness in other rooms. 

There should be a good footscraper, place for rubber 
shoes, and rear entry where muddy boots and outside wraps 
may be hung without taking into the house. It is often 
merely habit which makes the family "track" thru the 
kitchen or living room when there is another entry provided. 
Keep the other door locked. 

Children can be taught to pick up, and to eat tidily, to 
hang up their clothes, and not keep the whole house in one 
huge disorder no training is more valuable. 



In most homes where there is no permanent servant, the 
washing and ironing may be done by the housekeeper her- 
self, or by a day laundress, or part of it sent to commercial 
laundries. It is, however, possible in any case to cut down 
the amount of laundry in the following ways : 

1. Use crepe materials for much personal underwear, house- 

dresses, for children's dresses and rompers crepe 
needs no ironing. Use Turkish towels only ; knit goods 
and cotton flannel "nighties" need not be ironed. Cotton 
blankets in place of sheets in winter are warmer and 
save laundry work. Small boys much prefer jerseys 
and flannel shirts to starched linen. 

2. Simplify table service by discarding long allover white 

tablecloths, and use instead separate doilies, "runners" 
of crash or toweling, or small colored cloths of Oriental 
or foreign type. 

3. Use paper napkins frequently, especially for children and 

during the fruit season ; use paper cloths for luncheon, 
and paper towels as hand towels in kitchen and lava- 

4. Individualize towels, wash cloths, napkins, etc., giving out 

an "allowance" weekly for each person and child. 

5. Avoid ruffled, be-laced articles, especially for children's 


6. Standardize and schedule the washing; know how many 

sheets, cases, bedspreads, towels, napkins, shirts, 
dresses, etc., there should be each week, and do not 
overburden any week and upset the whole weekly 

7. Hang up clothing after use on proper stretchers and 

hangers, thus keeping clean longer by avoiding crush- 


The need of good equipment in the laundry has been 
dwelt on in Part VI. The price of a washer should be 
counted as an investment which will save on the wages of a 
day laundress, or on the health and strength of the home- 
maker herself. 

It is often advocated that the housekeeper without per- 
manent help should take advantage of the commercial laun- 
dry to the exclusion of the day worker to whose wages must 
be added the cost of equipment, fuel, soap, etc. But from 
experience it appears, that as yet, even with all the disadvan- 
tages of inefficient help (especially in country sections) the 
results of laundry work done at home are preferable to 
that done by commercial laundries, both on a basis of wear 
and tear and of price. The only exception to this may be 
the low rate of 35 cents to 45 cents per dozen for "flat" work 
(sheets, cases, towels) made by some good city laundries, 
in which case it is most wise to take advantage of such price 
and have the "flat" done outside the home. 

In other sections there is a "wet wash" service, meaning 
that clothes are washed (but not starched or ironed) and 
brought home wet at once. Again there is the "rough dry" 
plan which washes and starches and dries the clothes, but 
leaves them to be ironed at home. The success of these 
plans depends largely on the particular laundry. The "wet 
wash" method may not be sanitary, the "rough dry" method 
and "flat" or mangle work are usually safe, because of the 
high temperature used in drying. It is worth while to make 
a personal investigation before using a laundry. 

A recent experiment was made in the author's home, 
sending to an average laundry all of the washing and ironing 
usually done in one day by only an average laundress. 
Counting the labor of the worker as $2, and fuel, soap and 
interest on equipment as 50 cents, there was a cost of $2.50 
as balanced against $6.35 which the laundry asked for the 


same bag of wash, each pair of socks counting as 5 cents, 
and many of the children's rompers, 20 cents and 30 cents 
each, etc. The cost of collection and delivery, rent, interest, 
bookkeeping, profit, etc., and lack of volume of household 
laundry makes the cost too high for ordinary use. 


"Yes, that's all very well, but I live in the country and 
have no electricity nor gas, have a small baby and half- 
grown children. I can get no help at all what shall I do ?" 
This letter is typical of many homemakers in isolated sec- 
tions, and the author herself has been in exactly such a 
situation. The answer is, first, simplify furnishings, serv- 
ice, meals, clothing, laundry. Perhaps it will be best to 
use a small table for meals in the kitchen and make the 
dining room into a first floor nursery and playroom, where 
the children may be watched, and yet not be right under 
the feet. Cut down the amount of cleaning and handling 
necessary by laying away ornaments and extra furnishings, 
leaving only a minimum of articles to care for. Do concen- 
trated cooking ; plan one or two-dish meals instead of elabo- 
rate ones ; cut down laundry as suggested ; bring up into the 
kitchen or back porch enough vegetables and the necessary 
canned materials for several days to avoid constant trotting ; 
make every step count. 

And, further, pick out the essential things and do them 
first, and, if necessary, let the other details slide. Thomas 
Edison told a friend that "I always do the hardest things 
first." His advice is as applicable to the home as to the 
laboratory. The woman with little children must let some 
things go neglected ; if it is a choice between excessive clean- 
liness and artistic surroundings, on the one hand, and a 
woman's strength on the other, the health of the mother 
should come first. She has no right to sacrifice her health 



and youth for small children and housework; the children 
will need her much more a few years later. 

Third, train the older children to help one another, pick 
up and watch the baby intelligently. Train the baby to a 
strict feeding and^ sleeping schedule, and arrange your work 
according to the baby's schedule. For instance, plan to do 
the most exacting work, such as cooking, when the chil- 
dren are good or early in the day, and save the purely 
mechanical work like dishwashing for the time when they 


may be fretty and you will have to be interrupted. Let 
the baby sleep outdoors, so that it will be less nervous and 
fretty. When the baby naps, take a nap or at least a complete 
bodily relaxation for yourself instead of foolishly utilizing 
that time to "dig in" and completely use your nerve force 
up. Train yourself to manage several tasks at once without 
letting it fatigue you. 

Even in the country there are many labor-savers. The 
hand operated washing machine and dishwasher are better 
than doing work all by hand. A small gasoline engine will 
operate such equipment as washer, ironing machine, churn, 
separator, freezer, etc. The newest oil stoves are nearly 
as efficient as gas and only need a little more care in clean- 


ing and upkeep use one for cooking the year round. The 
fireless, and the hand suction sweeper are available. But 
most important of all is the planning, the picking out the 
essentials that must be done, and having that efficient atti- 
tude of mind that does not permit small details to annoy 
and create nervous tension. 


It is frequently urged by certain groups and persons, 
that co-operative living will still better solve the problems 
of the family which cannot afford or does not care to employ 
permanent help. Why, they ask, should ten families strug- 
gle with ten kitchens and ten laundries with ten second- 
grade workers, when, if they all co-operated they could 
equip one kitchen and one laundry with the most perfect 
equipment and first-class cooks and workers, thus relieving 
each homemaker of responsibility, and giving her better 
service than she can possibly now alone procure? Many 
experiments have been tried along these lines ; but it must 
be said regretfully, none have been a success for more 
than a few months. 

No one questions but that such a plan would greatly 
remove the burdens of management and result in better 
service with less friction than the present plan of having 
ten separate homes struggling with ten inefficient workers, 
etc. But it seems strange to the author that all these advo- 
cates of co-operative living fail to see that it is not necessary 
to start any new scheme to attain exactly this end it is 
only necessary to move to a high-class apartment hotel or 
boarding house and obtain exactly these benefits. For 
does any co-operative plan, such as these persons suggest, 
differ from living in an apartment hotel where one may 
have as many rooms as one chooses and eat in a common 
dining room? Or live even in a detached cottage and use 


a central eating place, as is so well established in many 
sections ? 

The chief obstacle of every co-operative plan is its ex- 
pense; in spite of what its advocates may say, it can be 
proved that co-operative living is far too costly for even the 
average family of moderate income. Without doubt a high- 
class apartment hotel or cottage eating system relieves the 
individual homemaker of responsibility and permits better 
management and higher class service, than that found in 
the individual home, but how many families, especially with 
children, could afford it as a permanent method of living? 
The advocates of co-operation, in their estimates, count the 
cost of materials and wages only they do not include the 
cost of management. They say, "if ten of us bought our 
supplies together, and we had five efficient workers instead 
of ten low-grade ones, how much more efficiently we could 
all live." But who is to buy the supplies, and who is to man- 
age the five workers? In other words, they entirely leave 
out of account the cost of managing any co-operative plan. 
Now the whole point of a co-operative scheme of any type is 
this if it is well managed, from the business side, it will be 
a success, if it is poorly managed it will be a failure; and 
in order to have it ivell managed, some person or persons 
must be well paid for his services; and, as soon as these 
services are included, then the whole co-operative scheme 
becomes more costly than the average family can afford. 

In many large cities there are apartment house hotels 
where it is possible to rent several rooms and then take meals 
in a basement or roof restaurant of the building. There are 
even other apartments where one may have meals cooked to 
order and sent up to an individual family dining-room for 
the family to serve themselves. In Cleveland there is a 
large and beautiful suite of apartments of this type which do, 
indeed, thus make the "mechanics of living" very simple. 


But the price! A suite of four rooms in such an apart- 
ment costs from $60 to $70 monthly, unfurnished, and the 
meals for only two persons amount to about $100. Such 
modes of living, then, are beyond the reach of the average 
home, and entirely out of. the question for families with 
growing children on a basis of price only, even if they best 
filled the requirements of family development in other 

In nearly all cities the tendency is for more and more 
families to live in apartments or "flats" ; the expense is less 
than for detached city houses, and the janitor service and 
heat furnished, and small rooms simplify housekeeping some- 
what, but conditions are not most favorable for children nor 
ideal for family living. 

There is also a second, and almost equally important 
reason why co-operative living plans (such as Montclair, 
New Jersey) have not been a permanent success. And that 
reason is that families are, and prefer to be, individual in 
their taste and living habits. Co-operation would be very 
easy if every one of us is willing to become "standardized" 
that is, eat just what the rest do, be served the same way 
without preference, choice or personal taste. 

But this is not the case ; we prefer our own privacy, we 
want certain food that others may not care for, we have 
marked likes and dislikes, and any co-operative plan to 
meet these varying demands and tastes, must cost more 
than a plan where all tastes are standardized the same. 
Concretely, it is possible to feed thousands of men in the 
Army with abundance of food at the low cost of 32 cents 
for food per day because every one of the thousand is eating 
the same ration of beef, beans, potatoes, and plum duff ; on 
the other hand, the cost of serving thousands in the dining 
cars of our railways is nearer $2 per day, because the dining 
car caters to individual preference. It may be said, then, 


finally, that co-operative living plans can be cheap only when 
those participating are willing to have their individual tastes 
and preferences set aside in favor of one, universal " stand- 
ard" service and kind of food. The truth is, however, that 
most of us still prefer inefficiency in service and management 
tp being deprived of our love of privacy, individual prefer- 
ence and choice this is the real reason why co-operation 
has, and possibly will always continue to fail. 


Since such co-operative plans are neither possible or 
practical for the great mass of families, and since permanent 
service is either of low grade, or too costly or impossible 
to secure, the housekeeper will find her solution in her own 
efforts rightly aided by "part-time" service of different 
sorts. As has been pointed out, a skilled day worker can, 
in one day, do as much work as a general houseworker can 
do in parts of two or three days. Again, in many homes a 
schedule can be so arranged, that a few hours of work 
each day will amply assist the housekeeper. Just what 
service will be needed, depends on the size of the family, 
whether there are children, the style of house, whether the 
members stay at home all day or are at work, etc. 

In large cities, there are many agencies which make a 
specialty of "part-time" workers. For instance, they will 
furnish a cleaning woman, a nurse, or a cook by the hour 
at all times. Again, in smaller towns there are many women 
who would like to use some of their time beyond that needed 
for their own family, to earn extra if the hours could only 
be arranged for both parties. The number of such mature 
and practical women who want to housework on a part-time 
basis has greatly increased since the war has forced up living 
costs, and many instances are known of where such arrange- 
ments have worked out most successfully. An advertise- 


ment in the local paper, attractively worded, will bring 

This is one work arrangement: For example, in a 
family of four adults, all of whom are employed out of 
the house all day, one day a week a woman comes to thor- 
oughly clean the entire house of six rooms ; one day a week a 
worker does the washing and ironing ; the family gets its own 
breakfast, leaving the dishes. At 4 p. m. every day a woman 
(with family of her own) comes and works until 9 p. m. 
During this 4^-hour period she washes the breakfast dishes, 
cleans silver or pantry, prepares, serves and clears up after 
a several-course supper, and lays the table for breakfast. 
The cost of this service is $4 weekly for cleaning and laun- 
dry, well done, and $5.50, at 20 cents hourly (for six days) 
for the cooking, or a total of $9.50 weekly. This is about 
the same as a general houseworker receives in a small town 
if she can be found ! But remark that there is no cost of 
meals for the worker but once daily, no room, light, heat, 
etc., less chance of waste, and all of the service is first-class, 
without any responsibility or friction for the housekeeper. 

Another actual case is of a woman who comes to work at 
10 a. m. and stays until 3 p. m. In this period she washes the 
breakfast and lunch dishes, serves lunch, bakes bread or 
cake, and prepares greatly toward the evening meal which 
the housekeeper serves and clears up after herself. The 
housekeeper does her own cleaning, and the ironing for a 
family of three. The service here costs $6 weekly for a 
period of five hours daily for seven days, and $i weekly 
for the laundry, with a minimum of waste, fuel, and "over- 
head" expense. This arrangement has been working most 
successfully for about four years the woman has a family 
of her own that she sees off to school before she goes to work, 
and to whom she is back before they are out of school, and 
for whom she has the whole latter half of the day, and yet 


earns as much as many permanent workers, with none of the 
mutual disadvantages. 

Such part-time workers receive from 15 cents to 30 cents 
per hour, depending on the kind of work, the skill, and the 
location. Generally, 20 cents or 25 cents an hour will cover 
any part-time service, even including mending or dressmak- 
ing. Men cleaners are able to do heavier work, and are 
worth the additional 5 cents or 10 cents hourly they may re- 
ceive. One friend told how she had the local painter clean 
her kitchen frequently in his spare time; old men can take 
care of furnace or yards, or even a boy of ten, if the family 
does not possces one, may do some of the work formerly 
done by "Mary Ann," on an hour basis. 


Although relatively few families live in college towns, 
the success of student workers as helpers to the housewife 
should be noted. In most college towns, there are many 
students who for room and board, or on a straight hour 
basis, will, if men, care for furnace, yard, windows, beat 
rugs, etc. Young women can assist with the cooking, or 
serving, or certain specific cleaning or mending. In the 
house where the author lived one year in a -college town, 
one of the women students had her room and board in 
exchange for getting the family breakfast, waiting on the 
family dinner, and doing about four hours of cleaning on 
Saturday. A boy student washed the windows weekly, and 
did the heavy rug cleaning, and cared for the lawn, by the 
hour. The mother of the family did the cooking, sent the 
laundry out, and was able, even with a family of six, to run 
her home on a minimum of service cost. At a western state 
school recently, the wife of one of the professors told how 
she never had a servant problem in her life, because she 
always arranged the work between three college boys, on 


the hour basis, and that she would never go back to any 
servant girl again ! 

Many Y. M. or Y. W. C. A. homes can furnish names 
of those who would be only too willing to do housework, 
if on a dignified part-time basis. One girl is known, who 
came at 8 a. m. and stayed until noon in one home, and then 
went to a neighbor's, working from i to 5 p. m., buying her 
own lunch independently, and having her every evening free, 
and yet giving some tired housekeeper just the necessary 
daily "lift." It is among such girls that nurses by the hour 
are commonly found, or what may be called a "mother's 
helper." To the housekeeper with children, this is one of 
the most important part-time services. She may be able 
and want to do all her housework, if she can only find 
someone to take the children for a few hours in the after- 
noon. In large cities, this work is definitely established. 
One may go to a good agency bureau, and have sent a reli- 
able young woman who will take children for a walk, to a 
museum, or chaperone them trustworthily anywhere. There 
are other grades of workers, also, who will come in and do 
the rougher work, such as mending, napkin washing, etc. 

Every housekeeper should do all she can to encourage 
"part-time" household service because it will only be on 
a part-time or hour basis in the future, that our detached, 
individualized homes can continue to exist. Effort should be 
made to locate women of mature experience who can give 
three or five hours to outside household service without 
foregoing their own homes ; to young women graduates of 
domestic science, who on an hour basis can find in house- 
keeping as dignified a work as teaching or demonstration 
work ; to the many other young women who have a natural 
bent toward housework, but who enter the store or the office 
because housekeeping is on an unstandardized, indefinite hcur 




In cities, of course, some parts of house or homekeeping 
are performed by the municipality. Such common ones as 
garbage and ash collection should be insisted on everywhere. 
In one progressive suburb, the ash man comes to the very 
basement door of the detached house, and takes a specified 
can out daily ; how much better than the householder's con- 
stant struggle and overseeing of a privately engaged person ! 
In one other progressive street, the entire care of fifteen 
furnaces is handled by two men employed by the owners 
of the houses collectively, instead of by each house indi- 
vidually. Such an arrangement permits more wholesale 
buying of coal and other advantages over separate manage- 

Municipal housekeeping in the way of clean streets makes 
a great deal of difference in the amount of cleaning and 
laundry work required in the individual home. Dusty 
streets should be oiled by the town or by the "Neighborhood 
Improvement Association." 

In a few cities steam for house heating is distributed 
through the streets like gas, but only in the closely-built-up 
portion, as the loss of heat and expense of construction is 
prohibitive on long runs. The cost is not less than for indi- 
vidual house heating ; the saving is in labor, trouble and dirt. 

A few co-operative steam laundries have been started 
in the country in connection with dairies, but with no great 
success, because the housekeepers do not place a cash value 
on their time and labor. 


As has been pointed out, the cost of running the servant- 
less household is much less than the upkeep of the house 
with permanent help. Even if the money expended for serv- 


ice by the hour is identical with the sum paid for service by 
the month, the saving lies in the lower " overhead," and par- 
ticularly in less waste of fuel and food. As one woman put 
it, who dispensed with a servant, and started in to do her own 
work, assisted by day labor, " I see now where all my maga- 
zines and theatre tickets kept going out of the kitchen 
garbage can." With present food prices, the food of an 
additional adult is certainly worth $5 weekly, and furnish- 
ings and room rent are higher than ever, thus increasing the 
upkeep over the figures of past years. 

While no general percentages can be given, we can take 
the estimates of families who have actually tried the two 
plans, and who have given their opinions as follows : 

Mrs. M. Location, Boston, family of two adults and two chil- 
dren ; over period of five years from 1912-1917: 

" Formerly one general houseworker, $28 monthly ; one nursegirl, 
$18 monthly; estimated total cost of both workers, including their 
food, lodging, etc., $75. Present plan : Laundress, i day, $2 ; cleaner, I 
day, $2; 3 hours' special nurse daily on hour basis of 50 cents day, 
$3.50; Sunday dinner at hotel for four, $3.50 (of which only about 
$i could rightly be charged to service) ; and boy, half Saturday at 
50 cents to clean basement, etc. Total, $9 weekly; no food for any 
worker except two lunches for laundress-cleaner, which you might 
say was 50 cents, thus bringing the total cost of service to not more 
than $10, as against $18 weekly in the first case. Housekeeper (Mrs. 
M.) herself prepares the meals, but often assisted with them and did 
other work even with a general housekeeper." 

The B. Family. Location, Chicago, 3 children and two adults; 
from 1915-1917: 

" I used to keep a cook and a nursemaid, and had a laundress ; 
this cost me in wages alone, $68. I reorganized my household this 
way : Had a man come in one day every week for cleaning at $2.50 ; 
hired a more capable woman who could both cook and do the laundry 
at $40 ; the children were older now, and one at school ; I bought an 
electric washer, and we did our wash in half the time as before; 
then I did the upstairs, and paid the cook extra when she kept the two 



smaller children when I wanted to go out at night This way the plan 
costs me about $55 in wages, but I have only one person to feed and 
care for, and all the work runs more smoothly and is better done than 

Mrs. S Five adults, near Cleveland, Ohio, 1914-1918: 

" I used to keep one general girl of all work at $24, and do all 
upstairs myself and finish the ironing as well as special cooking. I 
couldn't hire a girl now for $35, as they all work in factories. Now 
I send all washing out for $2.50 a week. Every other week I and 
a colored woman at $1.75 do the thorough cleaning. I get breakfast 
and am alone at lunch. My daughter in high school gets the dinner 
with me. It costs $15 for our service now, without any cost of food 
for the girl." 

Mrs. N. Family of 3 adults in New Jersey: 

" In 1915 we kept one general worker who did everything. We 
haven't been able to get anyone for some time, as we are in a some- 
what lonely 'suburb. I can't even get a good local worker. I find 
this plan the best in my family, and at less expense after all. Every 
other week I have a cracker jack colored woman from the city come 
out for three days. Then she does our wash, irons, and cleans the 
whole house. We wash only every other week. She gets $2 a day 
and her car fare, which is almost a dollar each time, or $7 every 
other week. Then once a week, generally Sunday, we all have din- 
ner at the club house here, which I don't call service, but our pleasure. 
One other night I try to go into town and meet Mr. N. and my son 
and have dinner with them. My son takes care of the heater. I 
should say that it costs me $18 for service only. I buy home-made 
bread from a neighbor twice weekly, and a cake on Saturday, as my 
talents run to sewing and not cooking. We all like the freedom of 
the arrangement very much. It seems to me that there need be no 
servant problem for the able-bodied woman who has no small 

The C. Family in a Pennsylvania Small Town. Three daugh- 
ters, 2 younger sons, father and mother and grandmother, 1914-1918: 

" You ask me how we manage such a big family without help. 
Well, we girls are all over twenty, and tho two of us work every 
day, we manage nicely. The boys cut wood for the stoves and do 


the ashes, and in summer take care of our big lawn and hose the 

porches. B . is a school teacher and takes Saturday morning for 

her work, which is baking, which she likes well, and in that time she 
bakes bread and pies and cake enough to last more than half the 
week. Grandmother makes the beds and tidies the rooms. Mother 
gets the other meals with me, and does the washing; we have a 
power washer and mangle, and it takes us about two days to get it 
all done along with the other work. We take turns at supper dishes 
between the four of us, or if we all happen to go out, father or the 
boys will help. Each of us girls gets a little money for our share and 
so do the boys. I can't say how much it costs, but of course less 
than any servant which we couldn't even afford." 

To sum up, we can say that the servantless house is by 
far the more preferable method of management. The chief 
secret of doing housework daily, and yet not becoming over- 
fatigued or dulled, is to use the old suggestion of " more 
head and less heels." Free time must be planned for. If 
necessary this planning must run counter to what is com- 
monly accepted as what " ought " to be the house routine. 
If there are children, they should share in the responsibility 
of small tasks so as to make the division of work more 
equable. Each child should " lift his own weight " in the 
housework at as early an age as possible. Part-time outside 
service will give more efficient, less wasteful assistance than 
any permanent worker. A simpler standard for the home, 
both in food and furnishings, will make the work less labori- 
ous. Finally, the servantless housekeeper should install and 
use very possible true labor-saver which will save her time 
or energy. 





1. How many hours per week (one person) are needed to 

keep your home in running condition : (a) For meal 
preparation and clearing; (b) For cleaning; (c) Laun- 
dry work; (d) Other work? 

2. What have you done since beginning the course to " short- 

cut " this time ? What more can you do ? 

3. (a) Enumerate the tasks on which you have made "time 

studies" and give your results, (b) How many exam- 
ples of "standard practice" have you written record 
of? (c) How does your present "schedule" differ 
from the first one you worked out? 

4. Count the number of " things " in your house that are 

neither useful nor beautiful and report. What is the 
most time- wasting factor in your home ? 

5. Give your experience (a) with resident servants, (b) 

part-time service. How do they compare in cost and in 







ONE of the problems in management which many 
housekeepers face at least during some part of their 
housekeeping experience, is the handling of house- 
hold workers or "servants." As has been pointed out, the 
"servant problem" is more acute than ever owing to the fact 
that women formerly engaged in household service have 
entered industries and prefer these conditions with high pay 
and freer hours to the more confining conditions which gov- 
ern housework at present. In many other cases, especially 
among colored workers throughout the entire Southern 
states at period of the war, men were receiving such high pay 
either in Government service or at "boom" war industries 
that their wives or families who formerly did housework, 
cleaning, laundry, etc., no longer needed to work and so stay 
at home. As one colored cook said to the family where she 
had been employed for years, "Jeff am makin' so much money 
by de Gov'ment dese days dat I thinks I'll just set at home 
and help him spend it." 

Even with normal industrial conditions, there is every indi- 
cation that service for the home will be increasingly more 
difficult to obtain and also to keep. It is therefore worth 
while for any employer of household labor to study the 
"servant problem," understand its causes, and particularly 
give attention to the relation and attitude between herself 
and any employee she may engage. 



Recently the national Y. W. C. A. undertook a report on 
household employment. They interviewed women workers 
themselves in different occupations ; some girls were at the 
time working as house servants, others as clerks, factory 
hands, office help, etc. And the girls themselves (who cer- 
tainly must be regarded as the best judges) summed up their 
opinion briefly that it is the conditions surrounding house- 
work, and not the work itself which are today urging women 
into factories, stores, offices any place except the kitchen 
of another woman. Prominent industrial and social wel- 
fare authorities who have studied the "problem" concur in 
the same view and even urge women away from domestic 
service because of the following reasons against it: 

(1) Social stigma of "servant" both from employer's class 

and from other members of worker's own group in 
other occupations, as factory workers, shopgirls, etc. 

(2) No standardized hours of work. 

(3) No independence or private life after work hours. 

(4) Too much loneliness and confinement and lack of stim- 

ulus from other workers. 

(5) No chance for advancement or professional progress. 

(6) Often lack of bodily comforts. 

(7) Housework offers fewer chances of marriage. 

It is significant that neither the girls themselves (this 
report was based on a consensus of 500 girls) nor social 
workers make any mention of pay in connection with the 
problem. All based their objections on the conditions or 
psychological objections involved. In other words, even if 
the pay of the houseworker and the office worker were iden- 
tical (at the present time housework is even better paid!) a 
girl would prefer the latter occupation. The most impor- 
tant of these objections, because it is the most difficult to con- 


trol and eradicate, is the social stigma which commonly 
attaches to the appellation "servant." Naturally, "servant" 
still carries with it the old world idea of an inferior, a 
dependent or subordinate. And in this country of democ- 
racy, whose very air breathes the idea that "all men are 
created free and equal" (meaning with equal opportunities), 
neither men nor women like to be in positions of implied 
inferiority to the people for whom they work. It is only fair 
to acknowledge that household service is still the only occu- 
pation for women where this inferiority is implied, or often 
keenly felt by the worker. 


It must be admitted by many women or mistresses them- 
selves that they are largely to blame for this relation. While 
other work for women has been put upon a business-like 
"employer-employee" basis, the servant still is part of the 
old feudal "mistress-slave" basis long since discarded by 
modern industry. They may not outwardly admit it, but 
most women who are able to afford servants to assist them 
in the home, want those other women workers to stay just 
servants and to remain on a subordinate plane where they 
can be bossed and talked down to from her platform of the 
superior mistress. They want the "servant" as well as the 

It would be an excellent idea if women employers of 
household labor could visit a modern large office or factory 
and see how employees in modern business are treated. The 
factory may hire the services of the most humble vegetable 
preparers, dish washers, label pasters, etc., and yet each of 
those employees is treated not as an inferior, but as a worker 
free and equal with the higher overseers and managers. The 
true basis of the success which modern industry has in deal- 


ing with employees and the reason why even the most inferior 
and low-wage factory entices girls away from domestic 
service, is the principle of "team work between equals." Each 
employee under "scientific management" feels that he is part 
of the company, and this team work basis elicits their loyalty 
and co-operation. The most successful corporations and 
employers of labor are those who are doing everything pos- 
sible to make each employee feel his importance, instead of 
crushing him by browbeating and treating as a subordinate. 

Whetl er she likes to or not, the housekeeper of today who 
employs labor will have to revolutionize her own attitude 
along the lines of modern treatment of employees or she 
will find no other women willing to work for her. It cannot 
be quite explained why women who do often assume this 
progressive attitude in regard to a trained nurse (who does 
similar acts to a houseworker), or to a stenographer, or a 
sewing woman, or even to a day laundress whom they em- 
ploy, nevertheless refuse to assume it to a woman who cooks 
their food and dusts the chairs. Why should she treat a day 
sewing woman or laundress with respect and fairness, while 
she so often feels it is her right and privilege as a mistress 
to browbeat, scold and tyrannize over a household worker? 
The reason is, that in her own mind, the mistress commonly 
does think the servant "inferior." And thus thinking, she 
naturally shows it in her attitude and treatment. 

Let it be repeated then, that the first step in solving the 
servant problem, is to solve the "mistress problem," and for 
the mistress to place her relationship with the worker on a 
straight, dignified, employer-employee basis. The old feudal- 
slave relation was possible as long as workers did not have 
any other occupations from which -to select, and as long as 
they remained unintelligent and uneducated ; but today work- 
ers will not put up with such medieval treatment. In other 


words, the mistress of today is trying to impose a worn- 
out, archaic relation upon a worker who in many cases has 
become more educated and who will not submit to it. 
Adjustment must be made before it is too late. 


The adoption of the modern employer-employee .basis 
means, first, that in her own mind the mistress will not think 
of the household worker as an inferior. Second, instead of 
calling her servant, why not think and speak of her as a 
household assistant, a household helper, or "houseworker" 
seems about the best term, which will counteract the present 
social stigma? If even the youngest $6.00 a week office girl 
is called Miss Smith, why not Miss Smith in the home? If 
the worker is really reliable and intelligent enough to trust 
with the preparing of food for the family, with attending 
to its comfort and keeping the home sanitary and attractive, 
is she not worthy to be called by her surname instead of 
addressed by the familiar first name which we reserve either 
for animals or for our loved ones? If each mistress would 
sincerely follow out this attitude, then gradually public opin- 
ion would come to place household work on a higher plane 
and the worker's own friends in other occupations would 
not longer slightingly call her "pot slinger," "kitchen me- 
chanic," etc. an attitude which does much to prejudice a 
self-respecting girl against household service. 


The second chief reason given against household service 
by all the workers questioned was "no standardized hours." 
It is my firm personal belief that all household service should 
be based on an hour system and that workers should live 
and eat in some other place than the home where they are 


employed. I feel strongly that the adoption of this living- 
out-plan would do more to solve the problem and change 
the conditions now surrounding the work than any other 
one step. I believe, and have preached for years that house- 
work, like any other occupation, should be placed on a day 
basis and permit the worker to have a home life of her own 
after the hours of service she gives to her employer. Such 
a living-out-plan, of course, would at once solve the point of 
standardized hours, for then arrangement can easily be made 
about the exact hours that a worker will give to her task. 
(See page 408, Chap. IX.) It will also in one sweep solve 
the objections of "private life after work," "loneliness" and 
"confinement," chances of meeting people, etc. And the 
author cannot too strongly emphasize her conviction and ex- 
perience that the final solution of the servant problem can 
come only by placing housework in all its branches on a day 
basis of definite hours, which will permit the worker to have 
her own life after that specified work is done, just as is now 
followed by factory hands, clerks, laundresses and sewing 

But if the mistress still wishes to cling to the present 
method of having workers (if she can find them!) sleep in 
the home, she nevertheless must arrange for them definite 
schedules of both the work they are to do for her and the 
rest or free periods they are to have for themselves. Over 
and over again has come the story of a worker "having no 
time to herself," and not knowing all day long at what time 
she will be "free." Mistresses say in reply that they do not 
require the worker to be busy all of the time, merely that she 
"be there" when wanted. But the mistress must surely see 
that it is just as fatiguing to "be there," as it is to actually 
work, and must provide and allow some definite period every- 
day which the worker can use as she pleases. 


How many mistresses permit a girl an hour or two every 
afternoon in which she can unquestioningly go shopping, to 
the library, or do exactly what she likes? When this point 
of a definite rest period for the worker was mentioned by 
the author at a lecture before a prominent woman's club, 
several immediately exclaimed, "But who will answer the 
bell in the afternoon while she is out ?" It was hard to con- 
vince these dear ladies that the situation is so serious today, 
that it is a choice between answering the bell oneself during 
a couple of afternoon hours or not being able to secure a 
worker at all ! 

Further, let any mistress ask herself, can she expect a 
worker to remain in good health and yet never leave the 
house except the conventional "Thursday afternoon off" and 
"every other Sunday"? The majority of mistresses in the 
past, too, have always exacted that their cooks and maids 
"stay in," in the evening, unless special permission is given 
to leave. Can any mistress imagine any factory or business 
man asking an employee to stay in the office or factory in the 
evening as long as she has finished her stipulated work? 
Why then, if the cook has served the supper and washed 
the dishes, should she not be free to leave the house every 
night if she wants to ? 


But no, the average mistress usually regards "time off" 
and free evenings as "privileges" or something for which the 
worker must beg and which is a favor if it is granted. In 
their own hearts many mistresses resent employees being 
sufficiently independent to leave the house without special 
permission. But from the employee's point of view, it is this 
constantly having to ask permission that creates the feeling 
of no independence a feeling that they keenly resent. It is 


a mistake for any mistress to thus patronize her workers 
and grant them "privileges" which frankly should be the 
employee's business-like rights. 

It may be set down as a rule and as an essential part of 
the new relationship that a worker should be free to leave the 
house and go and do what she chooses in the specified after- 
noon rest period or zvhen she has finished her evening's 1 
allotted tasks. 

When the author strongly stated this point at the above 
mentioned club audience, she was instantly met with the ob- 
jection, that permitting workers to leave the house without 
greater supervision would result in immorality ! Several of 
the finest club women rose and said that in restricting the 
girl's time away from the house and in supervising her 
friends they were doing her a favor and looking out for her 
best interests. No doubt these fine club women had the best 
of intentions. But in these days of independent women 
workers, no girl of intelligence or spirit will stand such su- 
pervision. Such a supervision implies on the face of it that 
the employer doubts the conduct of her employee and is 
therefore treating her like a child instead of a responsible 
adult. Let any mistress think for a moment of an office 
manager who would question his filing clerk as to where she 
had been the night before or whom she had seen. Under 
the new relationship, no employer has a right to question a 
worker as to where she has been, where she is going or what 
she does outside of the hours of her stipulated duty and 
work. The only exception to this is that she should not go 
places from which she might bring health contamination to 
the household. The old slave attitude (which so many mis- 
tresses still wrongly persist in following) meant paying for a 
girl's life; but the new business attitude means paying for a 
girl's work. 


To return to the point of supervision by the mistress in 
protecting the girls from immorality, which was made by 
several audiences addressed on the domestic service problem 
the facts are, that there is more immorality in the ranks of 
household workers than in any other class of women workers. 
This statement comes from such workers as Miss Grace 
Abbott of the Protective League, by matrons in rescue homes 
and from Miss Jane Addams of Hull House, who says : "In 
spite of the fact that domestic service is always suggested by 
the average mistress as an occupation of safety for girls the 
Federal report on Woman and Child Wage Earners in the 
United States, gives the occupation of the majority of girls 
who go wrong, as that of domestic service, and in this it con- 
firms the experience of every matron in a Rescue Home. 
Many indeed are the instances of fallen girls who only a few 
months before had been honest girls, cheerfully working in 
the household of a good woman mistress, whose sense of 
duty expressed itself in dismissing the outcast as soon as she 
knew her situation. Is it not significant that the girls who 
chiefly supply the demand of the "White Slave" trade are 
drawn most largely from the one occupation which is fur- 
thest from the modern ideal of social freedom and self- 
direction ?" 

In other words, the only result of the mistress's attempts 
to incarcerate the worker in her kitchen except on a speci- 
fied Thursday off, and to oversee her goings out and comings 
in, leads to nothing but the license which comes from 

How much better it would be if the mistress encouraged 
the worker to have wholesome social ties. She knows that 
for her own daughters mutual interest and recreation with 
young men of good standing are necessary, that every girl 
needs a chance to express herself socially, otherwise she will 


become dull and degenerate. Yet, in many instances, she 
allows her young worker possibly only in her teens, no re- 
laxing evenings away from work, and especially resents her 
taking advantage of neighborhood social life. If the mis- 
tress would only see how inconsistent it is to expect the 
highest morality and conduct from an individual she persists 
in shutting up like a chicken in a coop, or from one whom 
she does not allow the privilege of attending church or other 
ethical service ! 

Again, why is it that mistresses expect the highest per- 
formance and knowledge from their workers and yet refuse 
to grant them the stimulation of attending meetings or 
groups where home subjects are discussed? It is not unrea- 
sonable to think of a houseworker as a member of a food 
club, or as an attendant at meetings where topics of diet, 
sanitation, economy, etc., are discussed. Some women even 
resent their workers reading books and magazines about the 
house. Indeed, the author knows of but few families out- 
side of her own, where the worker visits food demonstra- 
tions, reads Government pamphlets or other matter along 
home lines. Yet, why not ? 


This brings the discussion back to the point mentioned at 
first, that the mistress must prepare a definite schedule of 
both off time and work time for each houseworker. It will 
assist any mistress to re-read Chapter II, on Scheduling and 
Despatching, because whatever principles of work are help- 
ful for the housewife herself are even more helpful for any 
employee. She should bear in mind that planned work is 
work done with less friction. And it is almost necessary for 
each employer first to try to follow the schedule she herself 
has made, before she exacts it of her employee. For it is 


one of the frequent complaints made by workers, especially 
in a household where only one is employed, that too much 
work is laid out for a required amount of time. It must be 
admitted that many mistresses are guilty of this fault or 
overloading work which cannot possibly be done in the re- 
quired time ; the result is that even the best worker becomes 
discouraged and resentful and doesn't do the overload im- 
posed on her. 

In households where there is but one worker, the house- 
wife herself must assume some of the duties or hire extra 
help by the day, unless the house or apartment and the family 
are very small. It is just because so many mistresses in the 
past have expected anything and everything and overloaded 
the one worker, that we now have no longer a "general house- 
worker," and that girls who formerly were general house- 
workers have turned to some specialized branch such as 
waitress, parlor maid, or cook. The only result of the mis- 
tress's unfairness has been to deprive the one-servant house- 
hold of today of the unspecialized help which is so badly 

Careful planning of the schedule should limit it to a defi- 
nite number of hours. There is no reason why the average 
housework in a typical family with modern conveniences 
cannot be compressed into 8 working hours or at most 10, 
instead of the 12 to 15 hours of which some servants have 
justly complained in the past. Of course, in every family 
the schedule will need to be interrupted because of occa- 
sional sickness, special guests, etc. But the regular every- 
day routine should be studied, systematized and made as 
nearly definite as possible. 

The schedule should, as has been pointed out, provide for 
work hours, and rest hours. It should specify each task 
and approximate time; it should include the special outside 


help such as laundress or cleaner, and state the days on 
which tradesmen come, hours of delivery, etc. If there is 
more than one worker, then their hours also should be care- 
fully scheduled with relation, one to the other, providing 
that when one is on duty the other is off. The schedule for 
houseworkers will depend, as for the housewife herself, on 
the various factors of hours of meals, size of family, number 
of rooms, etc. Following are some simple outlined schedules 
for one worker : 


7:00 A.M. 12:00 M. Breakfast, dishes, cleaning, preparing 

12 : oo M. i : oo P.M. Lunch. 

I : oo P.M. 3:30 P.M. Dishes, special silver, window or pan- 
try cleaning. Prepare towards dinner. 

3 : 30 P.M. 5 : oo P.M. Worker's off time. 

5 : oo P.M. 7 : oo P.M. Dinner and clearing up. 


7: 30 A.M. ii : 30 A.M. Breakfast, dishes, etc., as above, 
ii : 30 A.M. i : oo P.M. Off time. 

i : oo P.M. 2 : oo P.M. Lunch. 

2:00 P.M. 6:30 P.M. Special work, cleaning, preparing and 

serving dinner, housewife clears up 
after evening meal and stacks dishes. 


7 : oo A.M. 8 : oo A.M. Housewife gets own breakfast with aid 
of toaster, percolator, etc. 

8 : oo A.M. 12 : oo M. Houseworker begins work, as above. 
12:00 M. 1:00 P.M. Lunch. 

i : oo P.M. 4:00 P.M. Special cleaning and preparing toward 

4 : oo P.M. 5 : 30 P.M. Off time. 

5 : 30 P.M. 7: 30 P.M. Serve and wash up dishes of evening 


6:00 A.M. 7:00 A.M. Breakfast; pack children's school 


7:00 A.M. 8:00 A.M. Dishes; start soup, etc., for dinner. 
8:00 A.M. 9:00 A.M. Garden or butter making. 
9:00 A.M. 10:00 A.M. Beds, brush up rooms; lamps filled. 


10:00 A.M. 12:00 M. Baking, dinner preparation. 

12 : oo M. Noon dinner. 

I:OOP.M. 3: oo P.M. Clear up after dinner, clean kitchen. 

porch, etc. 

3 : oo P.M. 5 : oo P.M. Off time ; or mending. 

5:00 P.M. 6:00 P.M. Supper preparations; feed stock. 

6:00 P.M. 7:00 P.M. Supper and clear up. 

The above schedules are, of course, only suggestive ; they 
would vary from day to day according to the special tasks 
(see page 70). 

While a schedule is an excellent plan for most workers, 
it must be admitted that there are others who will show 
greater efficiency if allowed to plan their own work or do it 
in the method that suits them best. And it is not wise for the 
employer of this kind of woman to lay down an hour by hour 
scheme, rather write down the essential tasks that must be 
done and allow the worker her own license to do it. 


The fifth charge against housework on the part of women 
workers themselves, was "no chance for advancement." It 
must be admitted that, compared even to clerking and the 
lowest office positions, housework suffers at this point. There 
is chance that the $8 a week stenographer will before long 
receive $12, or maybe $20, if she increases her efficiency ; 
there is the chance that the dry-goods clerk may some day 
become head of the department, buyer, etc., but what hope 
is there for the house assistant to advance? It is a well 
known psychological principle that no worker increases his 
skill or interest or loyalty without some hope of financial 
gain, or some other reward, emotional or otherwise. This is 
as true of the cook or maid as it is of the stenographer or 
shop girl. Remember that the twelfth principle of scientific 
management, and perhaps the most important one, is the 
"Efficiency Reward." 


But how very few housewives ever think of raising their 
worker's wages or offering her any incentive to increased 
efficiency, until she comes and announces she is going to leave 
and work for Mrs. Brown across the street, who is willing to 
pay her more ? Would it not be a far better plan at the time 
of hiring an employee to tell her that if her work is satis- 
factory and she proved permanent, that she would receive a 
raise at the end of a certain period? One good plan is to 
offer an increase of $1.00 per month after the first 6 months 
of service are ended, up to 25 per cent of the original salary. 
For instance, a worker receiving $28 at time of engagement, 
would after six months receive an increase of $1.00 each 
month for seven months or until she had advanced to $35, 
and similarly with other wages. 

This may seem an unwarranted plan to many women. 
But it is a plan followed with great success by business firms. 
The theory is that at the end of the time of increase, the 
worker will certainly be worth 25 per cent more than when 
she began. In some cases, a raise of only 10 per cent is 
given. But business men affirm that if a worker isn't worth 
a certain per cent of increase at the end of a definite time of 
service, she isn't worth retaining. The other theory which 
some employers follow is to employ only the cheapest help 
work them hard until they demand more pay or want to 
leave, then discharge them and get other cheap help and 
repeat the process. But the more successful plan is to offer 
the competent worker a substantial wage incentive for in- 
creased efficiency, so that when she has become efficient, she 
will not leave but give her employer the benefit of her in- 
creased skill and training. 

"But I cannot afford to raise the worker's wages," com- 
plain many women. Yes, but if they stop to think, they will 
see that when they lose trained help they do afford the ex- 


pense of new advertisements or agency fees, the cost of 
breaking in new help, etc., which in the end amount to as 
much as the increased wage would have done not to men- 
tion the cost of nervous strain and worry. 

It must be remembered, also, that wages are only a part of 
the expense of a resident worker and that an efficient helper 
can save on food, fuel, breakage and wear and tear much 
more than the few dollars a month which may be needed to 
hold her. A full time houseworker is now a luxury and 
when the demand is greater than the supply, a high price 
must be paid. 


The industrial experts speak of the leaving and re-hiring 
of workers as "labor turnover," and they have estimated the 
per cent of this turnover in many industries. But no one 
has yet been brave enough to estimate the per cent of house- 
worker turnover in the home, although from the facts it 
would seem to be over 100 per cent a year ! Now it is true 
that a certain amount of change in positions will always 
occur ; but the modern housewife must take it as one of her 
responsibilities, as an employer of labor, to lessen the per 
cent of turnover of house employees by all the methods she 
can. Beside granting wage increase as above, she can 

(1) Give two weeks' vacation with pay to all employees 

having served one year. 

(2) Allow legal holidays or their equivalents. 

(3) Bonus for performing special tasks; like bread and 

pastry making, fine ironing, pressing clothes, etc. 

(4) Extra pay for extra work beyond stipulated time. 

(5) Bonus for six months' or a year's service. 

(6) Give percentage of saving on food and fuel bills. 

(7) Promote worker from lower position to higher. 


This last point is possible if more than one worker is em- 
ployed ; or sometimes a girl who is first employed as a gen- 
eral houseworker may become proficient and show such 
initiative and responsibility that she can advance to the 
higher position of housekeeper, and be relieved of the more 
fatiguing manual work by the services of a day worker. 


It is true that the worker in the confinement of a private 
home has no stimulus from a group, such as obtains in 
offices, factories, etc., and which exert such a strong influence 
toward increased efficiency and advancement. But why does 
not the housewife herself act as a stimulus on her employees ? 
Surely, if she were sufficiently interested and enthusiastic 
about food values and sanitation and methods of work, she 
could at least do something to stimulate an employee, espe- 
cially if she does part of the work along with her. Praise 
is another means of increasing interest and skill and should 
be often given when it is deserved. But above all, the mis- 
tress should try to give the worker room to develop her 
initiative the one practice which will surely increase effi- 
ciency and keep up the worker's interest in her work. 

Far too many mistresses advertise for "responsible" and 
efficient help and then surround them with such constant 
surveillance and hold them in such rigid subordination that 
the worker cannot become anything but a mechanical drudge. 
In how many cases does not the mistress always want the 
worker to do things "her way" ? In how few cases does she 
ever allow leeway for the ability of the worker to count? 
As someone has said, the average mistress gives her worker 
"responsibility without authority." Case after case comes 
to mind, where the mistress has actually killed the spirit of 
the worker by refusing to let her "have her head" as the 


saying goes. The author had in her employ for a number 
of years an exceptional Scandinavian woman who made this 
point clear: she said in her country, when a mistress em- 
ployed a housekeeper or worker, she then "put it up to" that 
worker to make a success of her management. But in this 
country, the American homemaker was constantly interfer- 
ing and refusing to give the authority sufficient to make the 
woman develop her best effort. And the author has herself 
found that the really capable and efficient housekeeper must 
be allowed to develop her initiative, to create and to have 
sufficient independence in planning her own work, to make 
her happy in doing it. 

There are some exceptions, but as a rule women in 
the home are exceedingly poor employers. The same 
housewife who flatters herself that she handles her house- 
workers well would doubtless not be given the position of 
office manager or factory forewoman by any manner of 
means. Also there creeps in at this point the old prefer- 
ence that many women have for working for men employers 
rather than for a "woman boss." Part of this may be due 
to natural sex preference, but undoubtedly part is also due 
to the poorer executive which the average mistress really is. 
When one hears tales of the petty nagging to which workers 
have been subjected, the interference of the mistress in the 
worker's private affairs, the unnecessary giving her work 
just to "keep her busy," it is small wonder that women 
prefer the freer regulations of modern industry where most 
frequently they are dictated to by men. 


The lack of bodily comforts often mentioned by girls who 
have worked in homes has also some foundation. There are 
many housewives who do provide sufficient bedding and fur- 


nishings ; yet it has often happened that the room devoted to 
the houseworker is generally the least desirable in the house, 
hot in summer and cold in winter, furnished with cast-offs, 
or is the attic room, devoid of any attempt at decoration or 
beauty. The housewife may say in defense that workers do 
not take care of attractive furnishings. And it is not un- 
usual to have an ignorant Lithuanian woman who never 
even heard of built-in plumbing in her own country, demand 
a private bath in a position here. Still, it must be remem- 
bered that a large reason why the servant girl so much fea- 
tured by the comic papers, looks frowsy and untidy is be- 
cause she has neither had time nor opportunity for her 
personal toilet. If a housewife wishes to have the worker 
neat and clean, she must provide the means of realizing it 
and the time for doing it. In the writer's own home it is 
plainly stated at the outset, that the attractive hangings and 
bedspread of blue figured cretonne will be taken away unless 
cared for and the room kept worthy of them. 

If possible, there should be an extra bath for the worker 
near her own room or she should be granted the use of the 
family bath at certain times. In all service portions of the 
house, hardwood or composition floors insure the greatest 
sanitation. A single size enamel bed of the hospital type is 
most suitable ; and it has been found that blankets which can 
be washed frequently or with each change of occupant are 
more sanitary than padded comforters. Beside adequate 
closet space a worker should have a chiffonier, table or desk 
and comfortable rocking chair. Generally, it is best to have 
the walls of light colored tones of paint and to permit each 
worker to "decorate" her room as she prefers. The rooms 
of all workers should be open to inspection at stated times 
and always required to be kept neat. 

There should be, if possible, some provision for the 


worker's meals, other than snatching a "snack" standing, or 
cold food in the dining room after the family meals are fin- 
ished. If there is a "dining alcove" in the kitchen, as de- 
scribed in the following chapter, that solves the difficulty. 
If not, perhaps one can be arranged, or at least a "drop leaf" 
in front of a window, preferably away from a view of the 
more or less cluttered kitchen. If the family is not too large, 
the worker's hot food should be served to her from the 
dining room. From the standpoint of health and efficiency 
the eating-on-the-run habit of many house workers must be 

There seems to be no reason why a high grade worker 
should not take at least the noon meal of informal luncheon 
with her employer. It is a little thing, but its psychological 
influence is great. Indeed, in many families there is no 
reason why the intelligent worker should not sit at the 
same table at least part of the time. In the writer's home, 
the following plan is followed with pleasant results, both 
to the dearly beloved "nursie"-housekeeper and the children. 
Every Friday this worker has time off, the whole after- 
noon, and does no planning or work whatever toward the 
evening meal on that day. 

It is the children's "cooking day," and as soon as they 
come home from school, they go with their mother into the 
kitchen to prepare the supper. Generally each child is 
allowed to choose the dish that he prefers and great inter- 
est is taken in vying with each other. At the supper hour the 
Housekeeper is called and sits with the family at table, being 
pleasantly surprised at the children's efforts and enjoying 
a meal about which she has not had to concern herself. This 
plan trains the children and also gives a personal touch to the 
relation to the houseworker. 

Then there ought to be some place besides the kitchen 


where the houseworker can receive her men callers. This is 
often possible when the right is not granted. In large house- 
holds, where a number of workers are employed, a servants' 
dining and sitting room is usually provided and sometimes a 
porch. To keep a general houseworker nowadays, condi- 
tions must be made attractive, and the "human element" re- 

All the foregoing does not mean that the houseworker 
shall be "coddled" the "servant must be worthy of his hire" 
the employer has a right to faithful service and must insist 
that it be given with dignified firmness. It is continual petu- 
lant fault-finding that is so destructive to all authority. 


"Housework offers fewer chances of marriage," is an- 
other objection raised by the girls interviewed. But even 
this can be overcome if provision is made for after hours 
recreation and the social life mentioned above. In every 
case, it should be realized that a short period of employment 
as a household worker (in a well organized household) will 
teach her habits of economy, experience ' and management 
which she will later find exceedingly valuable in conducting 
a home of her own. As soon as the social stigma is removed 
and more freedom for social life given, there is no reason 
why the worker at household employment should not meet 
and attract the most steady young men starting out to make 
their way just as they do and have done for years in the 
old countries of Europe. 

Speaking of marriage brings up the point of wondering 
why more homes do not avail themselves of the mature 
middle-aged woman or widow instead of the young "girl," 
as has been done in the past. The young girl naturally, if 
unconsciously, is still seeking a mate and this makes her 


more eager for movies and other city amusements where she 
can display her clothing and attract the opposite sex, while 
the mature woman, possibly a widow, with certainly more 
experience, will not demand such amusements so constantly 
and will thus make the problem easier, especially for the 
suburban or country home. 

On the other hand, many mature women apply for posi- 
tions, who "kept house for 20 years," but to which this is only 
a handicap, and who continually lay more stress on the home 
they used to have, the social position they once held, and 
whose efficiency does not warrant their boasts. It is nearly 
always the case that such applicants have had "every comfort 
in their own home," and the difficult point seems to be to 
make them feel that the employer's home is as superior as 
what they were accustomed to. Indeed, the author has had 
in her employ several able and refined married women, all of 
whom have had more "elegant" homes and more "handsome 
husbands" than the author ever has had or ever hopes to have ! 

Mature women of the right type always are more respon- 
sible and dependable. There are two chief points to be con- 
sidered in selecting them ; first, they may be those who have 
had their own comfortable homes and who will feel very 
sensitive if the contrast between their former position as 
superior and their present one as subordinate, is too keenly 
made. In other words, mature workers must be "handled" 
differently from young girls; if competent, she should be 
the "housekeeper." And second, the mature woman, with 
experience which would be intensely valuable to her em- 
ployer, often does not have the strength to do the rougher 
kinds of work. The combination to make here then is to 
hire a mature woman for efficiency, responsibility and man- 
agement and to have the rough and harder work done by a 
day worker. 


In a somewhat wide experience, the author feels it is safe 
to say that no woman over 50 should be taken for active 
housework. But women between 35 and 50 are excellent 
as housekeepers, children's nurse or any executive capacity, 
while the active work should be done by those between the 
ages of 20 and 35. 

There are also numbers of women with children who offer 
the most permanent dependable kind of help, especially for 
the suburbanite or in families with other children. Such a 
woman, having her own child with her, will be less lonely and 
more satisfied away from city amusements, and also more 
responsible with children. In pay they receive from $10 to 
$15 less per month than a worker doing the same work, 
without a child. Such workers may be secured from the 
Children's Aid Bureaus or Mother and Child Department of 
City Charities and other social organizations. Here the only 
problem is to allow the mother to discipline her own child 
and to allow in the work schedule sufficient time for her to 
clean and bathe the child as well as herself. 


There are two most common ways of securing labor for 
the home. One, the use of a commercial employment agency, 
and the other, inserting advertisements in local newspapers 
or nearby metropolitan papers. Mistresses should know the 
advantages of each method. The employment agency is at 
present operated by private individuals, who in return for a 
fee put those desiring help in touch with applicants. The 
agency is supposed to be responsible or to guarantee the 
honesty of the workers and looks up references of past 
employers as to efficiency. In most agencies, however, no 
faith at all can be put in this kind of reference. Also, since 
the agency receives a fee from the applicant when she reg- 


isters, as well as from the mistress, it can easily be seen that 
it is to the advantage of the agency to have workers change 
positions as often as possible ! 

The one advantage the agency offers is the chance to inter- 
view many applicants quickly and at once. But anyone who 
has sat for an hour in the typical employment office only 
becomes sickened both at the casualness with which mis- 
tresses engage workers and at the class of labor offered. 

Even when an agency cannot secure and says there are no 
workers for a position, it is possible to secure a much higher 
grade of worker by inserting a well written ad. The fee of 
the agency ranges from $2 to $5 for each worker, allowing 
one month of service, or if the worker leaves before that 
time the agency will replace. It is to be hoped that in the 
improvement in social and industrial relationships the private 
agency will be changed into some form of municipally oper- 
ated agency, run at cost ; or it has always been the writer's 
thought that the women's clubs all over the country should 
supervise locally run employment agencies and insist on 
higher standards of work and more dignity among the mis- 
tresses in regard to housework as a profession. It seems 
futile for women's clubs to discuss "Browning" and the 
"early Aztec pottery," while they neglect to solve or make 
any progress in the great problem of woman as an employer 
of labor in the home ; or hard to understand how they can 
reconcile their extreme solicitude for securing an 8-hour day 
and the highest working conditions for the labor of women 
in industry and outside occupations, with their refusal to 
conduct their own personal homes so as to conform to such 
fair demands. 

As was pointed out, generally a higher grade of labor can 
be secured through a newspaper advertisement in the classi- 
fied section. The following advertisement, based on an 


8-hour day is said to have brought 120 replies at each time 
of insertion: 

WANTED A young woman to do light housework, 8 hours a 
day, 6 days a week, sleep home. Apply by letter only. 

Another excellent advertisement is : 

WANTED Dependable, efficient household helper, treated as 
family, good wages, advancement. Apply Mrs. Smith, River- 
view, N. J. 

Much more can be learned by studying the applicant's face 
and appearance than by reading the dingy "recommenda- 
tions" she carries folded in her pocket-book. Previous em- 
ployers should be phoned or written to and questioned, espe- 
cially in regard to honesty and habits. 

Another alternative is to secure through advertising or 
otherwise an assistant of one's own education and social 
standing and make her one of the family, sharing family 
meals and other activities, like the farmer's daughter who 
acts as "help" for a neighbor. It would simplify matters to 
adopt her, for the time being, as distant niece, cousin or 
aunt, and keep the matter confidential. In such a, case it is 
especially needful that there be a trial period and a detailed, 
written agreement as to duties. The ad might read : 

"Competent high school graduate of good family, between 18 
and 20, wanted as mother's helper in the home of a domestic 
science graduate, to share family meals and have the status of a 
relative. Convenient and attractive suburban house. Salary 
$25.00 per month, with increase up to $35.00. Send small photo." 

"WANTED Working housekeeper between 35 and 40, normal 
or high school graduate, to be one of a family of 6, two small 
children. Large, comfortable room, no heavy work. Salary 
$35.00 per month. Give education, experience, and send photo." 

The success of such an arrangement depends, of course, 
on the personalities and temperaments of the worker and the 
employer, and requires tact and forbearance on both sides. 


It is one way out of the difficulty if resident help must be 
kept. There are many thousands of women everywhere who 
want and need to earn money and who would prefer domestic 
work under the right conditions. 


One of the chief requisites to success in all management 
of labor, is a clear understanding at the outset of the duties 
required, time off and pay. It is a good plan to have written 
down in black and white in duplicate what is expected and 
to read it to the worker and secure her approval before en- 
gaging her permanently. Too often mistresses engage a 
worker, -glossing over some of the work they expect done, 
and then later resent the fact that the worker is unwilling to 
do it. As many of the specified points should be made clear 
as possible, as for instance : 

(1) Hours of rising. 

(2) Hours of work. 

(3) Hours and time off. 

(4) Extras for which extra pay is given. 

(5) Pay, whether monthly or weekly. 

(6) Amount of notice required before leaving. 

(7) Whether medical care is paid for by mistress or 


(8) Understanding as to the care of the baby or young 


(9) Understanding in regard to breakage. 

(10) Complete list of detailed duties. 

The more definite the understanding at the beginning, the 
less likelihood there will be of friction later. In regard to 
the wages, it should always be specified as "two weeks notice 
given, or wages forfeited before leaving and two weeks' pay 
or notice given on discharge," or even a month's notice. It is 



usually advisable to take a worker on a week or two weeks' 
trial, during which time it will be seen if the position is 
mutually satisfactory. 


One of the best methods of securing definiteness in the 
execution of orders is to prepare a Worker's Manual, for 
the particular household. Any typist will make a couple of 
copies of these rules for a small sum. The idea is to write 
or paste in such a book the "standard practice" of the house- 
hold, so that a worker can most easily know what she is to 
do and when it is to be done. The headings of such a book 
might include : 


How to Prepare for Cooking. 

How to Clear Up. 

How to Make Bread. 

How to Wash Dishes. 

How to Set and Clear the Table. 

How to Serve Breakfast, Din- 

ner, Supper. 
How to Operate and Care for 

the Kitchen Stove. 
How to Care for and Where to 

Store Supplies. 
When Tradesmen Call. 


How to Clean Living Room, 
Chambers, Bath, Kitchen. 

How to Clean Porches, etc. 

How to Clean Windows and 

How to Polish Silver. 

How to Clean Refrigerator. 

How to Change and Make Beds. 

How to Fill and Clean Lamps. 

How to Manage and Care for 
Washing Machine and Wringer. 
How to Do the Washing. 
How to Do the Ironing. 
How to Care for and Where to 

Store Tools. 

Practice in Spring Cleaning. 
Inventory of Linen, Silver, Glass, 


In other words, the Worker's Manual aims to set down in 
black and white the directions which otherwise the mistress 
will constantly be giving and reminding about. If the col- 
lars and shirts are called for Friday and this day is set down 
in the Manual, then the worker will have less danger of 
forgetting them and the mistress less need of dictating about 


them. Each household has special -rules which can be thus 
systematized, made simple and put into the hands of the 
worker that she may read and follow. 


While the average mistress may employ only one or two 
servants, it is well for her to know distinctions of work 
which have come to be generally accepted as follows: 

Cook Prepare meals for family or other servant, keep 
kitchen and pantries clean, sometimes do own laundry. 

Kitchen Maid Under cook, prepares vegetables and does 
rougher work of kitchen and pantry cleaning. 

Waitress Serves meals to family, possibly preparing 
salads, etc. Washes family dishes in Butler's Pantry 
and sometimes has the duties of a parlor maid. 

Parlor Maid Cares for cleaning and dusting of first floor, 
answering door, etc. 

Chambermaid Making beds, cleaning bath, also mending. 
Sometimes combined with child's nurse. 

Child's Nurse or Mother's Helper Care of young chil- 
dren, washing their garments, mending and sewing. 

General Houseworker (If not extinct) combines duties 
of plain cook, cleaning and chamber work. 

Managing Housekeeper Oversees other servants, in large 
household, markets, has full charge over food, linens 
and house in general ; keeps account. Does no manual 

Working Housekeeper Buys and markets and has some 
responsibility, but also does cooking and other work in 
small family. 

No men servants are included in this list, because men 
employees are generally employed in only the wealthiest 


homes; they consist of butler, second man, foot man, 
chauffeur, etc. 

In such home, with three or more employees, the mistress 
has the opportunity to show what she can do as a real busi- 
ness executive. Or the same problems confront the house- 
keeper in a sanitarium, club or other large establishment 
where she has several working under her. In order to be 
successful she must remember first and always to be fair, 
to apportion each employee's work so that the work is 
evenly distributed and each "carries his own weight," rather 
than that one employee is shown partiality at the expense of 

Further, the manager of many people must have: (i) 
Clear plans as to what she wants done; (2) Be absolutely 
specific in issuing those instructions and commands; (3) 
See that the orders are executed. Nothing makes for fric- 
tion so much as a misunderstanding of orders. For this 
reason the orders should be clear in the manager's own mind 
first, and after she has given them she must not change them. 
Again, she should try to find out the peculiar failings or 
excellencies of each worker and the stimulus which will 
cause each to do better, more efficient work. She should 
understand that there are broadly two types of minds, the 
"detail" worker, who is excellent at the small repeated tasks, 
but who has little judgment, initiative or power to take re- 
sponsibility. The second class is more of the "executive" 
type of mind, those who generally dislike detail and routine, 
but who can be relied upon to act in emergencies or take 
charge and carry plans through. The more the manager or 
employer learns to understand these two types and give them 
the work that is suited to each, the more successful she 
will be as an executive. 

Frequently, in a large household it is wisest to secure 


workers all of one nationality, or one religion, so that there 
will be more harmony. For instance, if all workers are 
Irish and Catholic, they are likely to be more congenial than 
one of this faith and country thrown with another of Scan- 
dinavian and Protestant origin. While there are exceptions, 
it seems to be true that workers of these nationalities have 
the following characteristics : Irish (good hearted but often 
untidy, inefficient, little responsibility). Scotch-English 
(great dependability, sense of duty, well trained). German 
(thrifty, hard-working, capable of much manual work). 
Scandinavian (self-reliant, sometimes tricky, often extrava- 
gant, excellent as laundresses and cleaners). Polish-Lithua- 
nian, etc. (emotional, little responsibility, inefficient, but 
frequently good cooks). Italian (not dependable or take 
responsibility, sloppy at work, but thrifty and excellent 
cooks). French (very neat, thrifty cooks and sewers, some- 
times unreliable or looking to their own interest, but excel- 
lent managers; not capable of heavy work). 

There is a constantly increasing demand for trained house- 
keepers in sanitariums, hotels, clubs and semi-private estab- 
lishments. There is also a great demand for housekeepers 
in Y. W. C. A. and similar social agencies. Such a person 
should have the experience of actual practical work, and be 
able to do any branch of housekeeping in case there is such 
a necessity. But in addition she is supposed to have the 
executive responsibility, and to buy foods, running her ac- 
counts on a budget system, arranging meals and overseeing 
servants under her. Such positions demand exceptional 
ability, coupled with training, and above all, the knowledge 
of handling subordinates. The task can be compared to 
the position of sales manager or office manager in the busi- 
ness world. Such positions pay fairly well, not usually any 
more than the position of housekeeper in a wealthy private 


home. Any position of executive housekeeper demands 
good appearance and intelligence. There are many women 
who have had practical experience in their own home, who 
could easily with a little training qualify for such resident 
institutional positions. They must know food values, cuts 
of meat, marketing and arranging of meals, economical buy- 
ing of equipment and supplies, and usually have knowledge 
of laundry, cleaning, sewing and care of linen. 

In closing this chapter it may be said that much of the solu- 
tion of the "servant problem" rests with the mistress, and 
that it lies in her hands to become the fair-minded modern 
employer instead of remaining the capricious medieval mis- 
tress. Only by this adjustment and by doing all in her power 
to make the conditions surrounding housework on a par with 
the conditions surrounding other work, will she be able or 
should she expect to secure and retain high-grade women to 
give her efficiency and loyalty in the management of her 


1. If you were compelled through circumstances to earn 

your living as a houseworker, what sort of treatment 
would you expect from your employer? How much 

2. Give a general daily schedule of what you would expect 

from a worker and show the total time per week. 

3. What success have you had (or know of) in giving 

bonuses with the purpose of keeping houseworkers ? 
(b) What result for giving extra pay for extra work? 

4. Under present conditions and wages figure the cost per 

hour for a resident worker, taking account of the 
extra cost of food, fuel, light, laundry, breakage, wear 
and tear. 

5. With what ideas in the text do you disagree? 





TO HAVE a "home of one's own" is the universal ideal, 
yet no two ideal homes would be identical. Just as 
was shown in consideration of the subject of Budget- 
Making, how the "budget" must be adapted to the individ- 
ual family, so the home must conform as nearly as possible 
to the needs and aims of the particular family dwelling in it. 
The question "What is a Home?" may well be asked and 
answered before going on with definite suggestions for home 
planning. Is the home merely a shelter where the material 
needs of eating and sleeping can be satisfied? Or must not 
the home also provide for the educational, ethical and aes- 
thetic needs of mind and spirit? Truly the efficient home 
must be built to cover the educational and spiritual demands 
equally with the practical demands of a house. To illustrate, 
the efficient home must be so built as to help people, espe- 
cially children, develop the greatest health, and the best char- 
acter and possibilities in them, i. e., provision for music, a 
play room, or work benches for a growing boy, are even 
more important than hardwood floors, laundry chutes or a 
tile bath. A "den" for father or a "business corner" for 
mother may conduce to broader development than the same 
amount of floor space added to the size of a parlor, unused 
except for company. 




There is then a sharp distinction between "home planning" 
and "house planning." The most up-to-date, most labor- 
saving and most beautiful house might truly be a failure as 
a "home" unless it provided also for the higher interest's 
of the family, and was especially adapted to the needs 
of the particular family using it. 

The requirements of a normal family of parents and sev- 
eral children for a truly efficient home may be summarized 
as follows: 

1. Privacy given by adequate grounds, shrubbery and in- 
terior arrangement. 

2. Desirable "exposure" for light and sunshine in the 
most important rooms. 

3. Interior arrangement compact, labor-saving, easy-to- 
care-for surfaces and furnishings ; rooms for collective en- 
joyment and for individual privacy and work. 

4. Pleasing exterior of harmonious color and line ; mate- 
rial and construction maximum fireproof and weatherproof. 

5. High-grade plumbing ; restful lighting ; adequate, clean 

6. Built-in conveniences ; adequate storage for food, fuel, 
clothing, etc. 

7. Low operating cost; low upkeep and repairs. 


Privacy is one of the most desirable ends expected in the 
individual home, and the one quality that chiefly distin- 
guishes the home from a hotel, boarding house or any cooper- 
ative living plan. Adequate lot or grounds and concealing 
shrubbery will partly secure this ; but the house construc- 
tion itself affects the amount of privacy or lack of it. By 
the use of many windows of the wide "plate glass" type it 
often happens that the occupants of rooms are always visible 


from the street. Now even more air and more light would 
be secured if the windows were placed closer to the ceiling 
with higher sills, which would at the same time insure more 
privacy. The function of windows is to let in light and air, 
but they should be so placed or grouped as to give seclusion 
to the inmates at the same time. 

The common "double hung" plate glass window permits 
only half the window opening to be used for air, is often 
ugly in line, and prevents privacy. There should be a greater 
use of casement windows. These permit the whole opening 
to be used for air, have higher sills, and in many ways are 
more atractive. The casement-opening-out type is somewhat 
more weatherproof than the type opening in, and it does 
not take up room space when opened ; its disadvantage is that 
the screens must be on the inside, but there are various fix- 
tures on the market for opening the windows while the 
screens are in place; it is also more difficult to clean, as 
the washing must be done from the outside. Casements 
which open in should be used above the first floor. 

When the climate is very warm or very cold, the windows 
must be small to protect against excessive heat or cold, but 
in the temperate climate of our country, and with modern 
efficient heating plants, the windows may be large or many. 
Indeed, the tendency of present American architecture is to 
let in more light and air by the use of numerous windows. 
The "sun porch" or "sun parlor" is usually the most popular 
and attractive room in the house. 

Many windows increase the cost of heating somewhat but 
with later types of "window strips" or the less desirable 
double windows, comfort may be had even in cold weather, 
and health and cheer of sunshine retained. 

Porches should be planned for privacy and preferably 
should not face directly on the street nor be connected with 
the main entrance. Any one who has noticed a typical 



"row" of American houses, with all porches adjacent, filled 
with rocking, gossiping people, will recognize that such an 
arrangement does not make for privacy. 


The most desirable "exposure" or the relation of the prin- 
cipal rooms to the points of the compass and sunshine is the 
most important consideration in the arrangement of rooms 
in house planning. It often happens that a house plan is 
selected having attractive and convenient arrangement of 
rooms which was designed for an entirely different "ex- 
posure." The diagram showing the sun's path in summer 
and winter will make the following points clear : In the win- 
ter time in the northern hemisphere, the sun rises south of 
east and sets south of west, so that rooms having only north 
windows will get no sunshine whatever throughout the day. 
South windows will receive sunshine all day long, east win- 
dows sunshine in the morning and west windows in the after- 
noon. In midsummer the sun rises north of east and sets 
north of west so that all rooms will get sunshine part of the 
day. The hot afternoon sun of summer is not desirable. 

In midwinter the sun at noon is only a third the way up 
from the horizon to the zenith and the slanting rays will 
not be cut off by overhanging eaves or projections. In mid- 
summer the sun is nearly overhead at noon and eaves will 
protect the windows from the glare of the midday sun. 

The prevailing cooling breezes in our eastern states on 
hot summer days are from the south and west, so that a 
southern exposure is warmest in winter and coolest in sum- 
mer, and is altogether the most favorable exposure. 

The following, then, are the best exposures for the various 
rooms : 

I. Living room south will give sunshine and warmth in 
winter and comfort in summer. 



Nos. 1, 2, 3 and 4 Essentially the Same House 



2. Dining room east will give cheery morning sun at break- 

fast, winter and summer. West undesirable, because 
the level rays of the setting sun give discomfort at the 
evening meal. 

3. Kitchen north and east will be cool, cheery and not too 

hot and sunny for afternoon work. 

4. Living porch east, southeast or northeast not west, as 

that brings the full hot sun in the afternoon, just at the 





time when home maker and friends have leisure for 
porch recreation. 

5. Bed rooms any exposure except entirely west or full 

north, which are too hot, or too cheerless, respectively. 

6. Sleeping porch west or south, not east, as early morning 

sun makes sleeping after sunrise difficult; north, too 
much exposed to winter winds. 

The ideal sun plan of a rectangular house with four rooms 
on the first floor will have the living room in the southwest 



corner, the dining room in the southeast corner, the kitchen 
in the northeast corner, and the den, library or parlor in the 
northwest corner. The natural tendency is to place the 
living rooms facing the street and kitchen and dining room in 
the rear, but this is not always desirable on a lot facing 
north. The sketches of practically the same house show how 
the rooms should be arranged on lots facing the four points 
of the compass. It is not so simple to design an attractive 






-^ ^^i^ij-IE OF ^Uti!s R.AYS 





r / ^'\ 





house with the kitchen and dining room on the street, but 
it can be done. 

When the ideal sun plan does not seem practicable, modi- 
fications can be made which will help ; for example, a north 
dining room may have a projecting portion with a window 
which will catch the morning sun; west porches may be 
shaded by trees or awnings. Again, if the outlook or view is 
particularly attractive in any one direction, it may be better 
to modify the plan with this in mind. Houses on diagonal 


streets can have a more favorable sun plan than those placed 
straight north and south or east and west. 


From all practical points of view the house of masonry 
has advantages over other materials. Either brick, stone 
and stucco or "hollow tile" make the most permanent, sat- 
isfactory houses from the modern viewpoint. All of these 
materials are more fireproof, more sanitary and need less 
repair and upkeep than timber. Although the house built of 
timber may be attractive, today the cost of lumber makes 
the wood house nearly as expensive as that of more fireproof 
material, and the wood (particularly in the case of shingles) 
is not of so sturdy or lasting a quality as the wood which 
entered into the building of many houses still standing, built 
a century or more ago. The cement or stucco house on wood 
frame is not much more fireproof than an all-wood house, 
but has the advantage of permanent exterior finish. 

From the appearance point of view the stucco house can 
be made more attractive by the quality or roughness and 
handling of the material as it is applied. It should also be 
so colored as to be more interesting and harmonious and less 
like stiff, gray cardboard. 

The "style" or type of house can only be decided by per- 
sonal taste, climate, etc. All that can be said here is that it 
would be much better to use a given sum of money in achiev- 
ing a small house well than in attempting a larger or more 
elaborate house unsuccessfully. Generally speaking, these 
ideals should be realized in exterior construction : 

I. The house should harmonize with the surroundings and 
seem to be an integral part of them ; i. e., low, flat ground 
needs low roofed houses, not "castle" effects. The house 
must be "tied down" to the ground on which it rests first, 
by means of the right construction line of roof, etc., and 


second, by the means of shrubbery, lattice or other means 
to this end. 

2. The type of house must be kept "true" throughout 
"English" type must not be confused with a "Swiss" porch, 
or an "Italian" villa with construction features which are 
clearly "Colonial" ; otherwise the house will have a confused, 
inharmonious appearance. The advice of a good architect 
is needed here. 

3. Absence of unnecessary juts, scroll or stone work, spar- 
ing of bays and angles. Straight walls are less expensive 
to build, appear better and enable the heating arrangement 
to be placed more satisfactorily. 

4. The color plans, whether paint, masonry or stucco, 
should be pleasing, and as much as possible blended or in 
harmony with the adjoining houses and the feeling of the 


What needs must be met which affect the arrangement of 
the rooms in any house? There seems to be two broad de- 
mands : First, rooms large enough and suited to collective 
group-living and enjoyment ; and second, rooms suited to pri- 
vate or individual comfort and development. With these 
two demands in view we see that every house should have at 
least one room large enough for a group of twelve people 
to be comfortably entertained. Such a room is the living 
room, which should be in size varying from 12 by 18 to 
1 6 by 30 feet, which will give floor space sufficient for the 
dancing of young people, for a meeting or social gathering 
without crowding. 

Having the second demand in view, we find there are many 
times when not all the family cares to be a part of the one 
large group, but some members would prefer to be quiet or 
by themselves. This brings up the need for a second or 



smaller room, which may be a "den," sitting room or library. 
Many are the occasions when a group of young folks wish 
to use the living room and when, if there were no extra 
small den on the first floor, the parents would have no alter- 
native but share the noise of the young people or else, go 
upstairs to a bedroom. Again, there are many times when 
the home maker is entertaining guests in the living room 
when it would be convenient to have other members of 
the family, particularly the children, in a room by themselves. 
In families with small children this second room could be 
most conveniently a play room, or combined sewing room 
and play room. The one large living room and smaller sit- 
ting room are thus the two essential rooms which must be 
planned for in the efficient house. 


Why a separate dining room in the small family home? 
Only about three hours of the day are spent here does- this 
amount of time justify the special room? If a family has 
plenty of building space and money, no fault can be found 
with the separate dining room; but a combination living- 
dining room seems the more efficient arrangement in the 
small, moderate cost home. The combined living-dining 
room is not a theory, but has been successfully and prac- 
tically applied in many homes. The eating portion of the 
room can be separated by French or folding doors, or by a 
screen. A set of four doors instead of two, which fold 
back on themselves will give privacy to the dining portion 
and yet permit the dining and living room to be used as one. 
It is most delightful to have family meals in summer on 
screened porch, which may be glassed in for winter use. 
Then there is the popular dining alcove off the kitchen, 
which further lessens the need of a separate dining room. 
If there must be a choice between giving up the individual 

Rear of Hous^ with Glazed and Screened Living Porch Below and Sleeping 
Porch Above 


dining room and giving up the small den on the first floor, by 
all means let the dining room be omitted, rather than forego 
the small separate "withdrawing room." 


Although the plan of the single large living room or living- 
dining room is excellent, it must be carried out with restric- 
tions. For instance, many plans of inexpensive houses have 
the main staircase ascend directly from the living room 
and have the front door open directly into the living room. 
There are serious disadvantages to both these popular plans. 
In the no-vestibule plan, opening of the front door brings 
in a large quantity of cold air, slush and mud in bad weather ; 
also a guest entering has no private place to remove wraps, 
or again, it often proves awkward or unpleasant to bring a 
stranger directly into a group in the living room. 

The defense of the open stair is that it is picturesque and 
gives a more spacious appearance. The practical disadvan- 
tages, however, are that the open stairway (with no back 
stair) usually makes it necessary for every one wishing 
to go upstairs to cross the living room and ascend in full 
view of all; this is never pleasant, especially with children 
and servants. The second chief disadvantage is that the open 
stairway acts as a funnel to suck up heat from the first floor 
and often carry it wastefully upstairs. 

Both front and rear hall should receive careful attention 
and not be altogether dispensed with. In general, means 
should be provided so that the front door may be answered 
without walking across the living room. There should be 
a back stairway, or the front stair be so placed that children 
and servants can go upstairs without disturbing persons in 
the living room or dining room. The rear entry should be 
so arranged that tradesmen need not enter into the kitchen, 
and also so that children have some other means of getting 


upstairs than continually tracking across the kitchen or other 
rooms. It is sometimes advisable to have a rear hall and 
here locate the telephone and a small seat and make of it a 
"business corner." It should connect with the rear entrance 
so that children can take wraps off here ajid tradesmen enter ; 
there could be a box for the storage of rubbers, toys, etc. 
Rooms opening into each other may look more spacious, 
but they have two disadvantages that of creating much 
harder work in cleaning and much greater possibilities for 
noise and lack of privacy. It is a poor arrangement where 
entrance is made directly into a living room and where the 
living room, dining room, and even den, are all open into each 
other with possible ineffective portieres. No privacy, no se- 
clusion is possible in such rooms and no thorough cleaning 
except at a great amount of effort. 


Privacy is essential upstairs, and every bedroom should 
have its own door and should be able to be reached without 
having to pass through some other room. The bathroom, 
particularly, should be located so that it can be reached from 
the hall direct. The only exception to this is where there is 
more than one bathroom and where the second bathroom 
belongs solely for the use of some individual bedroom or to 
two bedrooms. 

There should be upstairs space provided to hold cleaning 
tools so that it will not be necessary to carry the tools from 
downstairs as mentioned in the chapter on Cleaning. Again, 
a linen and storage closet should be located on the hall so 
that it can be reached easily from all rooms. 

Many of us remember, and some of us still possess, the 
colossal wardrobes, bookcases and chests of past days. Some 
of these were both beautiful and useful ; but from the point 


of view of convenience and modern housekeeping, they took 
up too much space, were almost impossible to move and sel- 
dom fitted in with the rest of the furniture. In the present 
lower ceilinged houses such immense pieces are highly im- 
practical the fewer the "movables" in any home the more 
harmonious the room and the easier to care for. Built-in 
fixtures need never be moved out to sweep the dust from 
under them, they take less floor space than movable pieces 
answering the same purpose, and they can be more success- 
fully finished to match the trim and wall decoration. Also if 
plans are made for building-in when the house is being built, 
less portable furniture will be needed and hence more real 
economy practiced. For instance, a built-in closet for coat 
racks and a seat for overshoes is much more attractive and 
is easier to care for than a movable coat rack, settee and 
umbrella stand ; or a built-in buffet will be more efficient and 
commodious than the usual "portable" sideboard. Here is a 
partial list of excellent built-in fixtures : 

Kitchen cabinet recessed in wall. 

Buffet and china closets. 

Recessed iceboxes. 

Medicine cabinet recessed. 

Towel and linen closets in bathroom or hall. 

Bookcases with open shelves. 

"Pullman" ironing board fitting back into shallow closet. 

Window seats which hold wood, magazines, etc. 

Ingle-nook fireplace with seats. 

Telephone table and seat. 

Cedar closets for storage. 

Broom or cleaning closet. 

Built-in "victrola" cabinet, or cabinets for "records" or 

player-piano "rolls." 
Recess for piano. 
Built-in radiator covers. 
Closet or recess for table-leaves. 
Provision and milk receiver, built-in wall, locks when closed 

from outside. 


Another group of built-in fixtures is the chute which will 
save time and labor in house work. It is usual to connect 
fireplaces with ash chutes which run in the masonry work 
of the chimney to a hollow space in the base. Sometimes the 
kitchen range is connected with an ash chute of metal leading 
to metal ash can in the basement. 

Then there is the laundry chute, which, if possible, should 
have opening in the upstairs hall near the bathroom and in 
the rear hall or in the kitchen, leading to the laundry. The 
laundry chute may be combined with a dust chute by a par- 
tition in the center or a dust chute may be made of oval 
furnace piping, run between the studding. The openings for 
dust should preferably be in the floor, closed by a small trap 
door. Such chutes are best made of or lined with galvanized 
iron and always should have self-closing doors at the lower 
outlet to prevent their acting as flues in case of fire and 
becoming a dangerous fire risk. Speaking of fire risk, every 
house should have a number of small fire extinguishers, lo- 
cated near the fireplace, in the kitchen, the laundry and near 
the heater, also in the upstairs hall. 


An especially interesting built-in fixture is the so-called 
"breakfast corner" or alcove in or adjoining the kitchen. 
The seats are permanent and the table may be fixed or mov- 
able for other uses in the kitchen. The corner should be 
lighted by one or more windows and a special lighting fixture. 
Such an alcove adds to the attractiveness of the kitchen and 
does away with the necessity of a maid eating in the kitchen 
or having a separate room for this purpose. The dining 
alcove may be located in the position of the usual butler's 
pantry, between kitchen and dining room, or in a corner of 
the kitchen where it may be backed up by the kitchen cabinet, 
china cabinet or sink without loss of wall space. Often such a 


"breakfast" alcove becomes a breakfast, lunch and dinner al- 
cove when the family is small, as it saves so many steps. 
Not infrequently it can be added to existing kitchen. 

Still other built-in arrangements are "dumb waiters," best 
located near the rear hall, running from basement to the top 
floor and used for conveying food, laundry, waste baskets, 
etc., up and down, thus saving endless steps. In large houses 
a "lift" about four feet square is used for the same purposes 
and for carrying luggage or even one person. The kitchen 
elevator icebox spoken of before is a modified dumb waiter 
and is a manufactured article which can be duplicated by a 
competent carpenter. Another elevator which may be put in 
when building at small expense runs from the basement to 
the wood-box, near the fireplace. 

Among the special fixtures are disappearing beds which 
fold in a special section of the wall made to receive them, and 
aired from outside. Or where great economy of space must 
be practiced there are other forms of "in-a-door beds" which 
fold up and can be swung into a ventilated closet or dressing 
room when not in use, and which are more desirable than 
the so-called "folding beds." These are particularly well 
adapted for use on sleeping porches and can be arranged 
to swing down into the chamber or sleeping porch as desired, 
being kept dry and warm in a closet between in the daytime. 
They are made by the Door-Bed Company of Chicago. 

The more built-in fixtures the more floor space, the easier 
the cleaning and the more homelike and permanent the house. 


One of the most important of the group of built-in fixtures 
is the built-in or cabinet closet. Now, there are good closets 
and bad ones. The bad ones are those which are built too 
deep or particularly those which are so narrow and long that 
the entire front contents brushed against to reach 



the articles furthest back. If the closet is intended for clothes 
only, and if garments are hung on a vertical rod, it should 
be built just a little deeper than the width of a dress hanger. 
Or, another good construction is to have such a system of 
garment hanging on an adjustable rod which will lift for- 
ward, bringing with it five or six garments hung from front 
to back, after the manner of wardrobe trunks. In this case, 
a deeper closet would be more practical. In such closets 





From the Book of Designs of John Thomas Batts, manufacturer of Closet 
Furnishings, Grand Rapids, Mich. 

the light doors open the entire width and disclose all the 
contents. Sometimes these cabinet closets are built six to 
ten inches off the floor and with or without drawer under. 
This adds to the cost but gives better protection against floor 

The same general rules apply to all closet construction. Do 
not have the shelves so broad that front articles have to be 
removed to get at those at the back. Do not have the shelves 
too high to reach, or too far separated, one from the other. 
High shelves are suitable only for storage, but not for every- 
day use. 

A closet that is slightly oblong is the ideal, and two bed- 
rooms can most conveniently have adjoining closets in the 


waste space between walls. An inclined board fitted with a 
cleat placed at the back wall of the closet floor will keep shoes 
in better shape and away from dust. No drawer in any built- 
in fixture should be too deep, or it will be too heavy to puli 
out when full ; also a deep drawer makes it necessary to turn 
over the top contents in order to get at the lower layer. 
Avoid placing a heavy, deep drawer at the bottom of any 
closet, as this means an uncomfortable strain to bend over and 
pull it out. 

An excellent linen closet is a great convenience. A very 
desirable one was built as follows: The lower part of the 
closet consists of different sized drawers to accommodate 
large and small sheets, towels, cases, etc. The upper part is 
divided into three sections or open shelves, each having a 
close-fitting, hinged door. These sections are to hold blan- 
kets and may be lined with tar paper or made of cedar wood. 
If more space is available, a linen room can be built with 
open shelves on three sides for the holding of blankets and 
large bedding. Then, some of the shelves can be partitioned 
off with shallow wooden uprights to fit exactly the size of 
towels, cases, etc. A drop-light fixture should be in such a 
room, also in every large closet to facilitate finding articles 
at night. It need hardly be emphasized that all such shelves 
and drawers should be labeled clearly for quick identification. 

It is not advisable to place the linen closet in the bathroom, 
as is sometimes advocated, but preferably in the general hall 
where it will be more easy of access, though a small closet 
for clean towels is convenient. 

In placing a small medicine or similar wall closet, it is 
much better to "recess" it so that it is flush with the wall, 
especially when located over a hand basin. 

Kitchen and pantry shelves and closets have been spoken 
of in their respective places; the whole ideal in any closet 
building is to arrange its spaces so as to most conveniently 


fit the size and character of the contents which will be stored 
there, thus facilitating handling and preventing articles from 
being crushed. 


One of the largest expenses in the American home is the 
plumbing. To save cost here, the plumbing fixtures should 
be kept near together to avoid excessive piping ; i. e., bath- 
room should be over or at the same side of the house as the 
kitchen, and the laundry under the kitchen. The largest pip- 
ing expense is the 4- to 6-inch "soil pipe" which runs prac- 
tically straight from the basement through the roof and 
to which water closets must be connected closely ; if toilets 
are not located near or over each other, separate soil pipes 
must be provided. If it is not desirable to put in all eventual 
fixtures at once, by all means plan the plumbing in advance 
so that the main piping can be put in when building ; fixtures 
may then be put in later without great expense and without 
serious marring of floors and walls. 

All home builders should know the ditterence between 
"porcelain" and "enameled iron," which are often used as 
interchangeable terms in speaking of sinks, lavatories and 
tubs. Enameled iron ware is produced by a covering of 
enamel applied over cast iron. It must be fired in a kiln at 
a comparatively low temperature and its surface is softer 
and somewhat more porous than porcelain. The truly 
vitreous fixtures of porcelain are made of clay which under- 
goes a drying process of several weeks and then is subjected 
to a heat of about 2,500 degrees. This insures a high and 
impervious glaze which does not take stains so easily, cannot 
rust and is much easier to keep clean. Small sinks and lava- 
tories of porcelain now cost hardly any more than a good 
grade of enameled iron and are altogether preferable. 

Care should be taken to preserve the glazed surface of 


enamel or porcelain and consequently plumbing fixtures 
should not be scoured with gritty washing powders, nor 
should strong alkilies or acids be allowed to stay in them for 
any length of time. 

Bathtubs should be of the built-in type, if possible, so as 
to avoid the cleaning bug-bear of "reaching under the tub." 
These are less expensive than when first introduced. An 
extra first floor or basement toilet is needful where there 
are small children or maids, and if one's pocket book per- 
mits, a small but individual bath adjoining the maid's room. 
A small lavatory or hand basin on the main floor, either 
adjoining the rear porch or connected with the central back 
hall, is also a great convenience. Such small lavatories may 
be located in a closet between two adjoining chambers at 
moderate expense. 

In selecting the outlet traps of all lavatories, sinks and tubs, 
see that the trap can be detached easily or is provided with 
a screw cap which can be opened for the easy removal of 
clogged matter. There is usually a grease trap in the outlet 
of the kitchen sink to take care of stoppage. 

Most of the exposed parts of the plumbing are nickeled ; 
this is nickel plate over brass or bronze. Often the difference 
in price of two fixtures which look alike is owing to the bet- 
ter coating of nickel of one over the other. Poor nickeling 
quickly wears off, making the fixture unsightly. Porcelain 
and vitrified fittings for the bathroom are now replacing 
much of the nickeled ware formerly used. 

The drain from the refrigerator should not be connected 
with the regular drainage of the house ; there must be air 
space between so that there can be no possibility of sewer 
gas entering. Often the pipe from the refrigerator empties 
into the laundry tubs. This pipe is very apt to get clogged 
and it should be arranged so that it may be taken apart easily. 

Other details of plumbing conveniences are "compression 


faucets," which save water, especially hot water; a white 
porcelain seat on the toilet instead of wood ; noiseless tank 
attachments to the toilet ; a hose connection for lawns on two 
sides of a large yard ; a water connection on the porch for 
flushing ; in large houses a small "slop sink" in the rear hall 
is an excellent addition to the cleaning closet. 

The position of the main stop-cock for the water in the 
basement should be known to all members in the family so 
that it can be shut off instantly in case of an overflow or 
accident. It should be tested occasionally to see that it is not 
too stiff to turn easily. It is also a good plan to have water ' 
shut-off s in the principal lines of water supply so that the 
entire house need not be cut off from water when a new 
washer needs to be put in a faucet, or other repairs made. 

When putting in the rough piping is the time to plan for a 
permanent vacuum cleaner ; this should be located centrally 
in the basement with openings in each room. Or, if the house 
is small and compact, one opening in the hall on each floor 
will be sufficient with which to connect a long tubing. There 
is no doubt that the cost of such outfits will decrease in the 
near future, and it is now possible to secure an outfit for 
about $150 for a small house. 


There is still difference of opinion as to the relative merits 
of hot air, steam and hot water for house heating. A hot air 
furnace is least expensive in initial cost; gives quick heat; 
provides ventilation when the cold air box is connected with 
the outside air ; gives moist air when a special apparatus for 
furnishing water for evaporation is installed. The usual 
water tank situated in a cold part of the furnace is not suffi- 
cient to have much effect on the hot air supplied. The dis- 
advantage of a furnace is that distant rooms requiring long 
runs of piping cannot be heated adequately and in a strong 



wind the rooms on the windward side are difficult to heat ; 
also the pipes take up much space in the basement. A fur- 
nace is most suitable for a small, compact house. The fur- 
nace must be set deep enough so that there is sufficient angle 
to the hot air pipes to give a flow of hot air. 

Steam heating is best for large houses and is used in nearly 
all large buildings and apartments. The piping and radiators 
can be much smaller than for hot water, making the cost of 
the plant less. No heat at all is given to the radiator until 
steam is formed so that the water must be kept at boiling 
point or above to give heat ; the circulation stops immediately 
if the fire goes down. The temperature of the radiators 
is over 212 degrees F., which makes an uncomfortably in- 
tense heat. There are various systems of so-called "vapor 
heating," "modulated steam" and "vacuum" steam heating 
which in part overcome the disadvantages. 

Hot water heating is usually considered the best for homes 
as the water in the radiators can be heated to any degree 
up to about 210 and the water will continue to circulate and 
give heat even after the fire gets low or goes out. The dis- 
advantage of a hot water plant is that a considerable volume 
of water must be heated and it is thus not possible to modify 
the temperature of the rooms quickly for extreme changes 
in weather; also large pipes and radiators must be used to 
give good circulation and sufficient radiating surface. Hot 
water systems have an "expansion tank," located at the high- 
est point, which is open to the air. If the water is heated 
much over the boiling point, the water will boil out of the 
system and cause all kinds of damage, consequently the "ex- 
pansion tank" should always be provided with an overflow 
pipe leading to the basement or out of doors. 

In the pressure hot water heating system a column of mer- 
cury or spring valve is introduced so that the water can be 
heated over the boiling point. This gives more rapid cir- 


culation and smaller pipes and radiators can be used, which 
saves somewhat in expense and makes less volume of water 
to heat. 

Radiators should be placed under or near windows or near 
doors as this aids in the circulation of heated air and heats 
the cold parts of rooms. More artistic and low radiators 
are being manufactured ; a combined radiator and warming 
closet arrangement is useful in the kitchen and dining room. 
Sometimes radiators are enclosed, with space for the air to 
enter at the bottom and space for the heated air to come out 
near a window, but it is not advisable to place shelves over 
radiators as this interferes with the circulation of air. 
Rooms are warmed by circulating warm air. 

With moisture proof and cement lined basements, our 
American houses are very apt to be supplied with air that is 
much too dry for comfort or best health. Air at 70 degrees 
will take up* five times as much moisture as air at o degrees 
F. ; consequently, in cold weather, even if the air outside is 
fairly moist, it will be very dry when heated to comfortable 
living room temperature. If no moisture is supplied, it will 
be drawn from the wood work, furniture and from our 
bodies. When coming from out of doors into warm, dry 
air, the perspiration in our clothing quickly evaporates, which 
produces a very considerable degree of cooling of the body. 
This is why a room with moist air at 65 degrees seems 
warmer than with dry air at 70 degrees. 

There are a number of kinds of air moisteners on the 
market, the simplest being a flat corrugated pan which slips 
over each radiator at the back and is filled with water ; others 
are placed on top of the radiator. For steam radiators there 
is a valve which lets out steam without noise, said to dis- 
tribute the equivalent of five gallons of water per day. There 
is an arrangement for furnaces which supplies water auto- 
matically to a pan placed over the dome which will really 



supply the hot air with adequate moisture. Sprinkling the 
basement floor with five gallons of water night and morning 
will help somewhat. 

Of furnaces, steam and hot water heaters there are types 
too numerous to mention, but by all means secure a heating 
plant with capacity sufficient to a little more than heat the 
house, for it is more economical of fuel to run a large heating 
plant slowly than to force a plant which is a little too small. 
The various magazine-feed heaters, like the Newport and 
Spencer, for hot water or steam, burn the smallest or buck- 
wheat size of hard coal, which is cheaper and require fuel to 
be added only once in 24 hours in mild weather and twice 
in cold weather. A good draft is required for such heaters 
but is needed for efficiency in any heater. 

There are several small devices which make the care of 
any system easier. One is a draft regulator with a dial 
located in any wall on the first floor, connected with chains 
to the damper and draft by which the degree of heat may 
be maintained with fair regularity. Another is an alarm 
clock arrangement which turns on the drafts at the desired 
time in the morning so that the house may be warm by break- 
fast time. The best arrangement is a thermostat which turns 
on the drafts when rooms go below the desired temperature 
and turns them off when the desired temperature is reached, 
thus automatically maintaining an even temperature in the 
house. This saves much coal, especially if from careless 
management the fire is allowed to burn until the house is 
uncomfortably hot and the coal only a bed of ashes, requir- 
ing a new fire to be built. These thermostatic heat regu- 
lators cost about $60 installed by a plumber or electrician, 
but can be purchased from a mail order house for about $25 
and put in by the owner with very little trouble. 

An efficient heater will not continue so unless kept clean. 
An eighth of an inch of soot or dust will reduce the con- 



ductivity of the heat absorbing surfaces to a very consid- 
erable extent. Steam boilers in factories are usually cleaned 
twice daily ; house heating plants should be cleaned with a 
wire brush or otherwise daily or once or twice a week, 
depending on the fuel and heater. The heater should be 
thoroughly cleaned and overhauled in the spring and treated 
according to the directions of the manufacturers, not left to 
accumulate moisture and rust throughout the summer. 

To save fuel, all hot water and steam pipes should be 
covered with asbestos pipe covering and the heater itself with 
asbestos cement ; even furnace pipes should be covered with 
sheet asbestos. 


Daylight comes chiefly from the sky, and is a perfectly dif- 
fused light, except direct sunshine, which is too intense for 
eye comfort. House lighting should approximate natural 
conditions and the best diffusion of the light for the general 
illumination of rooms is best obtained from the now common 
form of "indirect" lighting fixtures, in which all or nearly all 
of the light is thrown onto the ceiling, from whence it is 
diffused to all parts of the room. The "semi-indirect" fix- 
tures, made with a bowl of thick opalescent glass, throw some 
of the light downward and are ideal for the general illu- 
mination of living rooms. The ceiling must be white or 
cream colored and the fixture suspended from the correct 
distance to obtain proper illumination without serious loss 
of lighting efficiency. Indirect lighting fixtures may now be 
had for gas as well as for electric lamps. 

This soft, general illumination may be made sufficiently 
strong for reading in all parts of the room, but the better 
practice is to have individual portable lights or wall fixtures 
for close work like reading, sewing, music, etc. 

All lights should be shaded so that the full glare of an 


intense light cannot fall directly in the eyes. This is espe- 
cially needful with the high intensity of tungsten or "Mazda" 
lamps and Wellsbach mantles, which have many times the 
light intensity of the old-style carbon filament electric lamps 
and open flame gas burners. A softer effect may be secured 
by using frosted or ground glass globes instead of globes of 
clear glass. But even frosted globes should be shaded, pref- 
erably by shades which give an artistic color effect. 

A point to remember in the installing of fixtures is the 
direction in which the greatest candle power occurs. In an 
electric bulb and in an upright gas mantle lamp the greatest 
intensity of light is directed horizontally ; in the inverted gas 
mantle the light is directed chiefly vertically downward. 
When it is desired to concentrate light downward, an in- 
verted gas mantle or electric lamp with deflecting globe 
should be used, but when general illumination for room 
space is wanted then the upright gas mantle lamp or upright 
tungsten lamps should be used. 

The worst possible light for a kitchen is the central drop 
electric light on a swinging cord, usually furnished without 
a reflector. It would be better to use wall fixtures over sink, 
stove and table or one indirect bowl to light the entire room. 

In too many houses the details of artistic lighting are badly 
neglected and the discomfort of poor lighting not realized. 
The local electric light company will usually furnish infor- 
mation and booklets on the subject or very interesting mate- 
rial may be obtained by sending stamps to the Illuminating 
Engineering Society, 20 West 39th St., New York City. 


A truly efficient home must usually be "made to order/* 
and the prospective house builder must have a fairly definite 
idea of what is wanted to be able to order it. This means 
furnishing the architect or builder with sketches or drawings 


made to scale. For preliminary sketches, a scale of l /% inch 
in the drawing equals one foot in the house is commonly used. 
The working drawings are usually made with J4 inch equal 
to a foot ; larger for detailed drawings. Sketches are most 
easily made by the amateur housebuilder on cross section 
paper lightly ruled in eighth-inch squares. The first step in 
planning a house is to measure a few familiar rooms so as 
to have an idea of how large a room, say 12 by 1 6 feet, really 
is ; also to measure width of stairways, doors, windows, etc. 
Existing furniture should be measured so that it may fit wall 
spaces in the proposed house. It is usually easier to 
modify a plan found in magazines or house books which 
meets nearly all the requirements, rather than to start alto- 
gether anew. 

The most difficult part of house planning is to arrange for 
the stairways ; often not enough "head room" is provided for. 
The rule for stairs is that twice the "riser" plus the "tread" 
should equal 24 inches. Stairs with 6^2-inch riser and 
1 1 -inch tread are very easy ; a 7-inch riser and lo-inch tread 
makes a comfortable flight; 8-inch riser with 8-inch tread 
makes a rather steep stairway but one often used for attic 
or cellar stairs. 

The ceiling height is now from eight feet, in small-roomed 
houses, to ten feet in large houses with more spacious rooms. 
A house with a nine-foot ceiling will measure ten feet be- 
tween floors, allowing a foot for floor joists, plaster and floor- 
ing. A stairway with 7-inch risers will require 17 steps 
from the first to the second floor in this house. If the stair- 
way has a straight run and lO-inch treads, this would mean 
16 times 10, or 160 inches, or 13 feet 4 inches from the edge 
of the first step to the edge of the landing floor. (Note 
that there will be one less treads than risers.) "Head 
room" under a landing would require a rise of at least 6 feet 
2 inches, plus 8 inches for floor joists, etc., or 84 inches ; this 


would be given by twelve 7-inch risers, and with lo-inch 
tread there would be needed eleven times ten, or no inches, 
or 9 feet 2 inches. If the landing were 3 feet 10 inches wide, 
the distance would be 13 feet from the beginning of the stair- 
way to the wall side of the landing. From the landing to the 
second floor would require five steps more, but as there is 
one less tread than riser, this would make four times ten, or 
40 inches. 

The second floor can overhang the beginning of the stair- 
way a certain amount, depending on the height of the ceiling 
and the steepness of the stairway. With the stairs we have 
been considering, three steps up make 21 inches rise, leaving 
"head room" of 6 feet 3 inches ; these three steps would give 
30 inches of "tread," so the second floor could project that 
much and still give sufficient head room. Too much projection 
is not desirable as it interferes with taking furniture up and 
down stairs and with the appearance and lighting. Winding 
stairs or stairs with "twisters" economize space but are 
somewhat dangerous, especially with the "twisters" at the 

It is usual to place cellar stairs under, and attic stairs over, 
the main stairway to economize space, though if the roof 
lines would interfere with the attic stairs in such position, it 
may be better to run them parallel to the ridge pole, between 
chambers, and use the space underneath for closets. 

As a general rule the partitions between rooms on the 
second floor should come directly over the partitions on the 
first floor, otherwise floor joists must be made extra strong, 
and even then ceilings are apt to crack from warping due 
to unequal drying out of the woodwork. 

The least expensive house for the usable space is square or 
rectangular in outline, with one stairway, one chimney and 
one soil pipe. A bungalow costs somewhat more than the 
same floor space in a two-story house because the extra ex- 


pense for excavation, foundation and roof more than over- 
balance the saving in wall and stairs. 

The planning of the kitchen should have special attention, 
but the subject has been well covered in Chapter I, pages 
19 to 48. The position of sink, range, refrigerator and cab- 
inets should be clearly drawn in to scale. In the living room 
and chambers the position of couches, piano, beds, dressers, 
etc., should be carefully determined. 

After the sketches are made they should be turned over to 
a good architect who may be able to suggest improvements 
and who will make the "working drawings" and the "eleva- 
tions." He will be able to give the artistic roof lines, en- 
trances and constructive details which go so far to make or 
mar the appearance of the house. He will also make the 
detailed drawings for built-in sideboards, bookcases, cab- 
inets, as well as for the windows, doors and "trim," which is 
usually made at a mill and called "mill work." A good 
architect can easily add much more than the five or seven 
per cent of the cost charged for his services to the value 
of the property. In this country the sale value of the house 
always must be considered, for it is not often that a house 
is occupied by the same family for more than ten to twenty 


A farm house can now have all the modern conveniences 
of a city home and at a cost of less or no more than the dif- 
ference in the price of the land. Even a small city "lot" costs 
$1,000 or more and a good sized one from $3,000 to $5,000 
or more; the farm house lot is usually worth perhaps $100 
at most. 

Modern city improvements consist of (i) running water; 

(2) sewerage system for kitchen, laundry and bathroom; 

(3) electric current for light and power; (4) gas. 


The best equipment for running water is a pneumatic tank, 
located in the basement, into which water and air are pumped 
under pressure. The compressed air in the top of the tank 
forces the water all over the house like any city supply. 
The pump is best operated by an electric motor which is 
automatically stared when the pressure becomes too low 
and stopped when the required pressure is reached. The 
cost of such an outfit is from $120 to $150. The pump may 
be operated also by a small gasoline engine which may be 
located at a distance from the tank, or by a windmill. The 
source of supply may be a well or cistern. If the well-water 
is very hard it may be advisable to have two tanks, one for 
cistern rain water and the other for the hard water. The 
hot water supply can be heated with a coal or kerosene 
heater as described on pages 52 and 53. 

A sewerage system usually involves the construction of a 
"sceptic tank," which is a modernized cesspool with over- 
flow piping distributing the purified sewage underground in 
a safe and odorless manner. They work continuously sum- 
mer and winter and require little attention or cleaning. About 
$100 would cover the cost. 

A small automatic electric light plant operated with a gaso- 
line motor may now be purchased for $200 up. These pro- 
duce current of 32- volt intensity and special small motors, 
fans, vacuum cleaners, electric irons and toasters may be ob- 
tained at about the price of similar equipment for the usual 
no- volt current. Then there is the acetylene gas plant for 
light and for cooking, as well as plants for making gasoline 
gas. But it is. less expensive to use kerosene as fuel for 
cooking and the latest types of kerosene ranges are but little 
more trouble than a gas stove and cost less than a good 
coal range. 

Ice can be harvested and stored on most farms ; if not, 
then there are various "iceless" refrigators, consisting of a 


circular metal compartment with shelves which run through 
an 1 8-inch galvanized iron pipe from kitchen, pantry or 
porch through the basement floor, or about eight feet into 
the ground under the porch. The food compartment is raised 
or lowered by a crank and pulley arrangement. The cost is 
about $30, or no more than an ice refrigerator. A temper- 
ature of between 55 and 60 degrees F. is said to be main- 

A furnace or hot water heater is just as easily installed 
in the country as in the city, and indeed the farm house 
can be made as efficient and labor saving as any city house for 
the cost of an automobile, and any farmer who can afford an 
automobile, can afford to have an efficient house. A good 
way to start to investigate costs is to send for the special 
catalogs on plumbing, heating and electric lighting, of Sears, 
Roebuck & Co., Chicago ; then send for the catalogs of the 
Western Electric Co. and other specialty manufacturers. 


The kitchen garbage, waste paper, etc., can be disposed 
of in a convenient and sanitary way by an "incinerator," 
but these cost from $75 up, which seems rather expensive. 
An arrangement which will do similar work is a so-called 
"kitchen heater," made to attach to a gas stove, which may 
be obtained from gas stove makers. These come with a gas 
burner "lighter" and cost only $12 to $15. Some of them 
are furnished also with a hot water front. Another kitchen 
incinerator consists of a small brick chimney into which 
all garbage, waste paper and tin cans are put, the whole being 
burned once a week and the ashes taken out of the door in 
the basement. 

A convenient garbage can is the "Sanitas, which opens by 
foot pressure. The out-of-doors, underground garbage re- 
ceptacles are also useful and keep the garbage away from 


dogs and flies as well as out of sight. In communities where 
there is no garbage collection it can be buried in a shallow 
trench 'or given fresh every day to chickens or stock. 

Each community breeds its own flies and mosquitos, for 
neither pest can fly far. The flies propagate in horse manure 
and uncovered garbage ; the mosquitos in stagnant pools of 
water, tin cans, cess pools and catch basins. It only means 
enlightened public sentiment and a comparatively small ex- 
penditure of money to rid any town of both these pests. 
Valuable bulletins may be obtained free on flies and mos- 
quitoes from the Dept. of Agriculture, Washington, D. C. 

Community housekeeping in keeping streets clean and 
abating the smoke nuisance affects materially the amount of 
cleaning and laundry work in each individual household. It 
is to be hoped that universal suffrage may help to do away 
with much of the dust and smoke now so common. The cost 
of community cleanliness would be, in all probability, less 
than the individual cost of extra cleaning and laundry work. 
Neighborhood clubs often can have streets "oiled" at very 
modest expense per family and do away with much of the 
street dust. 


1. If you were planning to build, what would you include? 

2. Would you favor a combined living-dining room? 

3. What built-in fixtures would you have? 

4. Could these be added to your present house : 

(a) Sleeping porch (b) Dining or living porch 
(c) Dining alcove ? Show how by sketch. 

5. What are the most serious faults in your present house? 

How might they be helped or remedied ? 





THE basis for all efficiency in work, whether in industry 
or the home, is health and controlled vitality. We 
may put a worker into the most efficient kitchen, we 
may hand her the most useful labor-savers, we may show 
her the easiest way to wash clothes, but all our teaching will 
be in vain if the worker is ill, if she "fags" easily, or if she 
is subject to headaches, "nerves," or other physical ailments. 
The woman with a headache cannot intelligently plan a 
family budget no matter how much she may know about 
one, nor can an "all-tired out" woman take enough interest 
in the subject of nutrition to enable her to feed her family a 
balanced ration. The important factor in doing work is the 
human factor is the woman herself. Any improvement 
that can be made either in methods of work, or in the tools 
with which work is done, is important only in its effect on 
the welfare and health of the human worker the woman in 
the home. Let it be repeated household efficiency, and 
above all, personal efficiency, depend absolutely on the phys- 
ical and mental health of the woman herself. 

Although both men and women suffer from sickness and 
disease, the records of unbiased insurance companies assure 
us that women are considered the poorer "risks," and that 



women as a group are most subject to attacks of illness. 
This is probably due to the fact that until a few years ago 
it was considered "unwomanly" to indulge in active outdoor 
sports ; it was thought "indelicate" to talk about and study 
the body and its functions ; and there was a strong popular 
feeling against women wearing comfortable clothing or 
taking exercise which might make them "masculine." 

We are fortunately entering a new period when it is de- 
cidedly "good form" for girls to be "athletic," and where, 
in schools, girls' camps, and in the popular mind, the close 
relationship between efficient work and good health is being 
daily more clearly recognized. 

The homemaker of today must allow for definite health 
care in her daily schedule. Housekeeping will be drudgery 
or the reverse largely through her physical ability to meet 
the work-demands of house tasks, and her mental ability to 
withstand the tension of childbearing and child care. But 
the aim must be, not to see just how much strain they can 
endure, as much as to see how great they can make their 
strength to accomplish more work. Far too many women 
pride themselves on "what they can do," rather than on 
"what they are," and refuse to take time to build up their 
surplus vitality so that it shall be equal to the tasks and 
demands imposed by the three-fold service of housekeeper, 
wife, and mother. 

There are several definite factors which the homemaker 
must consider in her efforts to secure and retain health as 
a basis for personal efficiency : 

I. Air and sleeping conditions. 

2. Food and eating habits. 

3. Posture and comfort needs. 

4. Fatigue and balanced work conditions. 

5. Clothing. 


6. Exercise of the body for recuperation. 

7. Exercise of the mind, emotion and aesthetic sens^. 

8. Mental attitude toward her work. 


We can live for days without eating and drinking, but we 
cannot live without air for more than a few minutes. The 
homemaker, who spends possibly 60 to 80 per cent of her 
time indoors, must be sure to see that the air supply she 
breathes is adequate and changed sufficiently often. Moving 
air is of far more value than still air, for we take in about 
one-fifth the expired breath when there are no air currents ; 
therefore windows should be opened from the top, and doors 
opened to give cross ventilation, or a horizontal window- 
ventilating board inserted beneath the lower sash in winter. 
House temperature should be about 60-68 degrees, not 
higher, since heat is debilitating, and overheated rooms are 
responsible for far more sickness than colder rooms which 
are more invigorating. It is excellent to accustom oneself 
to a low temperature and not "coddle" oneself as many 
homemakers do by becoming so used to indoors that they 
are not hardened, and are therefore more subject to cold, 
grippe, etc. House air should also be moist, since in cold 
dry weather it is estimated that the air supply of a house 
needs at least ten gallons of water every 24 hours. 

The need for constantly changed air in the kitchen, where 
the homemaker spends so much time, bears repeating (see 
page 42). If the house is constantly permeated with cook- 
ing odors, then there is decidedly something wrong or lacking 
with the ventilation measures, which should be remedied. 
A professor friend of the author's constantly refers slight- 
ingly to, "The Home the Museum of Smell and Taste." 
Certainly too many homes, and particularly kitchens, are 


so badly aired that the worker becomes overheated, faint, 
and enervated as she stands at stove or bends over sink. 

Again, dust is a big enemy of the houseworker ; house 
conditions should be such as to permit the least dust to col- 
lect ; the carpet sweeper, the vacuum cleaner, oil dusters and 
small removable rugs are important not so much as labor- 
savers as because they minimize the number of impurities 
and disease germs, especially those which attack the nose 
and throat and come from expectorations and dirt tracked 
into the house. 

Even if the homemaker finds it difficult to have a constant 
supply of fresh air in the house during the day, there is one 
time when she can control the air supply, and that is at night. 
The modern sleeping porch has come to stay, and outdoor 
sleeping is no longer a fad. Such outdoor sleeping should 
appeal to woman, so many of whose hours are spent in con- 
fining rooms, especially in apartment or small city houses. 
Night air is purer than day air, being free from smoke, rising 
dust, etc. Some women may say, "Oh, but I always sleep 
with both windows open." But there is no comparison be- 
tween outdoor sleeping, and rest taken for 7-8 hours in an 
indoor room, however well ventilated, which has been heated 
and occupied during the day and subject to house odors. 
Any porch, up or downstairs, can be screened, or be fitted 
with swinging windows at little expense ; or a sleeping porch 
can be "built on," thus greatly enlarging the sleeping-room 
capacity of the house. 

The secret of successful, comfortable, outdoor sleeping 
is to have as many blankets under as over the sleeper. The 
author has slept outdoors for five years with marked benefit 
to health. Two of her children have never slept indoors, 
and even as this chapter is being written, the baby four 
months old, has been sleeping outdoors in a temperature of 


2 below, with splendid results in uninterrupted night sleep 
from 9 p. m. to 6 a. m., with no feedings between. Outdoor 
sleeping increases the supply of fresh air, which in turn 
stimulates digestion and gives additional repose to the nerves. 
Some families spend large sums spasmodically, going to ex- 
pensive health resorts, when they might every night secure 
free, in their own locality, air just as pure and invigorating. 
Only one glance at the annual statistics showing the fearful 
mortality from tuberculosis a "house disease" through- 
out the nation, should induce every homemaker to urge out- 
door sleeping on herself and her family, so that they can by 
this little at least, combat the increasing evils of confining 
business and industrial life. 

Single beds always permit more comfort; and it is to be 
hoped that the sensible habit of having separate beds for 
each parent and member of the family will become even 
more popular. The homemaker, especially, should try by all 
means to secure private, uninterrupted sleep for 7-8 hours 
to enable her to "carry on" to the end of the busy day which 
usually falls to her share. 


Much has been said about feeding the family and using the 
"balanced ration" ; yet it appears that women, and particu- 
larly hpmemakers, do not give as much attention to their 
own eating habits as they should. It has been found that 
more women doing housework are either over, or under 
weight than women in outside occupations ; large numbers 
of homemakers from 35-50 years of age are carrying excess 
fat. Tho this may be due to other contributing causes, it 
must be admitted that many women overeat, compared to 
their needs based on their height and the work that they do. 


Many women say, "Oh, I know I'm fat, but I feel all right 
anyway." Nevertheless such women should practice those 
habits which will keep weight down automatically, no matter 
how well they feel, because (i) excess fat is unattractive 
from the appearance standpoint; (2) overweight after 35 
years (according to the best insurance statistics) is closely 
associated with a high death rate; (3) and excess weight 
particularly handicaps efficiency in work or recreation. 

Every homemaker, then, should closely estimate her own 
dietary. If she has servants and merely makes the beds or 
does light dusting, etc., then she needs only approximately 
1,800-2,400 calories daily ; but if she does most of her house- 
work, including the heavier work of room cleaning, laundry 
work, etc., then she will need more nearly 2,500-2,800 
calories. (See page 331.) 








4 ft. 8 in 


5 ft. 2 in. 

... 124 

5 ft. 8 in. 

. . . 146 

4 ft. 9 in 

.... 114 

5 ft. 3 in. 

... 127 

5 ft. 9 in. 

. .. 150 

4 ft. 10 in 

.... 116 

5 ft. 4 in. 

... 131 

5 ft. 10 in. 

... 154 

4 ft. ii in 

.... 118 

5 ft. 5 in. 

... 134 

5 ft. ii in. 

... 157 



5 ft 6 in. 

... 138 

6 ft. 

... 161 

5 ft. i in 

. . . . 122 

5 ft 7 in. 

. .. 142 

(From the tables compiled by forty insurance companies, and 
published by the Association of Life Insurance Medical Directors.) 


One of the chief evils of which women permit themselves 
to become victims, is the habit of constipation, and poor elim- 
ination of the colon and alimentary tract. Thousands and 
thousands of women habitually suffer from headaches, diz- 
ziness, fatigue and similar symptoms, which are directly trac- 
able to an overstuffed and inadequately emptied colon, or 


lower bowel. Physicians call such conditions "auto-intoxi- 
cation," meaning that the contents and poisons of the intes- 
tines which are not removed quickly enough, "back up" 
(just like an overful waste pipe or sewer) and thus poison 
the blood supply. It is this poisoning of the blood with 
waste and decaying food residues, that makes the "head- 
aches," the "tired feeling" of which so many women con- 
stantly complain. Many women think they are "tired" from 
work, whereas the truth is that they are suffering from a 
slow poisoning of their systems due solely to inactive, slug- 
gish elimination of food waste. Three times a day is the 
natural, normal evacuation of the bowels, or a movement 
after each meal to keep the system in the most healthful 
condition; once a day is the minimum. 

Medicines and dangerous cathartics which irritate and 
often induce after effects of marked constipation should 
never be used. There are foods and diets which will nor- 
mally gain the same results, and the homemaker, as a special- 
ist in food values, should be the very woman to make intelli- 
gent use of such diets to improve her own health and thus 
retain and increase her personal efficiency. Anti-constipa- 
tion measures are: (i) Much more "bulk" or "roughage" 
foods like the coarser vegetables, carrots, spinach, cabbage, 
celery (especially eaten raw), and the green foods like let- 
tuce, chicory, romaine need be eaten ; (2) "roughage" in the 
form of coarsely ground cereals, particularly bran, which 
may be eaten in some form at every meal, whole oatmeal, 
cracked wheat, and coarse flours and breads; (3) raw fruits 
like oranges, pears, grapes, berries, and such dried ones as 
figs, prunes, raisins ; (4) avoidance of coffee and tea, which 
both stimulate and derange the liver and digestion ; (5) min- 
imum of meat, especially the red meats ; (6) liberal drink- 
ing of water or fruit juices, from 2-3 quarts per day, between 


Emphasis is here laid on this point of right feeding and 
adequate elimination, because no one other single health 
point is so vital to women's efficiency and so generally 
neglected, with the result of "nerves," irritability, and greatly 
impaired work power. As a class, too, women overeat of 
sweets and undereat on strengthening foods, as compared 
with men. They have delighted in the unhealthful fineness 
of bolted white flour, the excessive sweet of preserves, jams, 
and dessert fripperies. Women in the home, as well as in 
business, tend to prefer chocolate, puddings, and starchy 
foods, wrongly using a less quantity of protein, vegetables, 
and fresh fruits than they should. This excess sweet is fa- 
vorable to teeth decay, "acid mouth," etc., and unfavorable 
to the strong muscle and blood development necessary if 
women are to work efficiently at maximum output of both 
their muscle and their mental power. 


Again, many women who do their own housework habit- 
ually undereat or have contracted wrong eating habits. Fre- 
quently such thin, nervous women and quick workers allow 
themselves to "eat any old time." Now, there is a bodily 
"rhythm" in every bodily act, and once the muscles have 
adjusted to a definite eating interval (or any other definite 
interval), that period should be observed, even tho we eat 
only a small quantity at a time. Many thin, nervous women 
are exceedingly rapid workers and can just "pitch in and do 
wonders" in a short time. Ofter they get started on a spe- 
cial stretch of work, key themselves up, and then refuse to 
sit down and eat until this long, badly planned work stretch 
is finished. The chances are that at the end of this pro- 
longed strain, they either don't eat at all, or they eat hastily 
and ravenously. 


Another wrong habit practiced by women who are at home 
alone during the day is to "seize a snack" of cold' stuff from 
the pantry and eat it hurriedly instead of taking time to pre- 
pare a warm dish. One should never eat when tired; never 
eat heartily before active physical work; never eat when the 
body feels "tense," or when suffering from excitement or 
anger. Definite regular meal periods must therefore be 
included in the daily work schedule, and work so planned as 
to avoid excessive long stretches of effort without adequate 
"rest periods." 


"Oh, but I get so tired doing housework," is the complaint 
of many women. Now, I ask fairly, is it the work itself 
which makes the "tired," or is it the way it is done? Is it 
dishwashing as a piece of manual work, or is it the stooping 
over a low sink? Is it the paring of vegetables, or is it the 
standing the slouchy way, weight on one hip? In other 
words, too often blame is laid upon the task itself, which 
should be put upon conditions or the manner under which 
the work is done. Right posture is an essential point in work 
efficiency. Frequently there is a slouchy poise, particularly 
while standing before table or stove ; the weight may be bal- 
anced unevenly, or the shoulders allowed to stoop, thus keep- 
ing the chest in and not permitting proper breathing. Now 
a slouchy posture causes the blood to stagnate in the liver, 
and causes a feeling of mental confusion and despondency, 
and is often the cause of chronically cold hands and feet. 

Again, if the abdomen is constantly held relaxed, the re- 
sults are very bad, as this posture interferes with digestion, 
and is a contributing cause of many women's diseases. For 
these reasons some form of corset or abdominal belt or 
supporter should always be worn when doing the manual 


tasks of housework, especially by women who have had 
children and whose abdomen is unduly relaxed from child- 

Flat feet and broken arches are also more common in 
women than in men, largely due to faulty standing, which 
places unnecessary strain on the arches of the foot. More 
sensible shoes with broader heels will help, as well as always 
trying to stand in a poised symmetrical way with weight on 
balls of feet, not against the spine. Often the leg muscles ar^ 
weak, which fault may be remedied by more vigorous exer- 
cise, running, tennis, etc. Many times wrong posture is held 
just because the matter is not given thought, as stooping over 
to hold a long-handle floor mop, or picking up a bucket with 
the weight thrown on the spine instead of on the shoulders, 
etc. Keep the chest up, and, above all, practice deep-breath- 
ing exercises, as it is practically impossible to breathe deeply 
and hold a very bad posture. 


If the bad posture results from wrong heights of working 
surfaces, a small change will usually remedy this (see pages 
37-39). The sitting posture is always more efficient and less 
fatiguing than the standing position. It is quite easy to wash 
dishes, iron, make cake, pare vegetables, etc., while in a sit- 
ting posture, and this principle should be followed and not 
let it be regarded as "lazy to sit down." Do not make the 
mistake of thinking that standing is exercise, or that to sit 
down at work is a sign of weakness or inefficiency, as many 
women do so regard it. On the contrary, in factories and 
industries without number, work chairs and benches have 
been installed for tasks at which the worker formerly stood 
up, with the result that the workers have done the same or 
even a greater amount of work with far less fatigue. 



For some women, the typical office "high stool" is com- 
fortable. For others, especially women of heavier weight 
and figure, it is most uncomfortable to thus perch on a small 
sitting surface with the legs drawn up or left hanging with- 
out foot rest. For such women some form o,f modified 
kitchen chair on 4-8 inch blocks of wood, with casters, to give 
additional height, will be found preferable. The author uses 
in her kitchen an adjustable, so-called "library" or office 
chair, with both adjustable back and seat, so that it may 
be raised or lowered to exactly fit the working surface at 
which it is temporarily used. Generally some kind of foot 
rest, such as a narrow board, should be nailed to the legs of 
the chair, as there is still less fatigue if the feet are sup- 
ported ; indeed, no sitting position with the legs hanging 
should ever be held for a long period. 


The power to relax is one habit which every homemaker 
must acquire if she does not know how already. Some people 
even sleep without relaxing ! Relaxation consists in making 
the body "limp" and letting the tension of both muscles and 
nerves entirely disappear. While it can be practiced in a 
sitting position, it is always best to relax lying down. It 
may be put down as a rule that every homemaker should at 
least once a day lie down in a relaxed position from ten to 
twenty minutes. This is best taken by lying on a couch 
or bed flat on the stomach, arms hanging limp at sides. Dur- 
ing such a horizontal position of the body, the blood pressure 
becomes less, and thus the cell walls are rested; also, it 
greatly strengthens the sex organs, many of whose ailments 
arise from too constant standing. 

A noted woman, now elderly, and famous for the extent 
and variety of her interests, gives it as a positive injunction 


to women that they lie down a half hour each day if they 
would be free of "nerves" and have better health. Even a 
five-minute rest in a reclining posture gives much more rest 
than a much longer period taken in even a comfortable chair. 
It is a faulty American habit, and especially practiced by 
women, to use "rocking chairs." There is no rest in a "com- 
fortable" rocking chair ! It dissipates energy and makes for 
nerves. Try to use the Morris, wing-back, and square library 
types of chairs instead. The horizontal relaxing may often 
best be taken in the late afternoon before commencing the 
busy supper preparations necessitating standing; mothers 
with young children whose sleep is disturbed at night should 
by all means "make up" with a day nap, generally when the 
baby sleeps also. 


One of the chief aims of household efficiency has thus 
been the elimination of fatigue. By standardizing dishwash- 
ing (see page 78), by using a power washer instead of the 
hands, by sitting down to work, etc., much of the fatigue 
accompanying work can be eliminated, as has been shown. 
The reason we wish to eliminate all possible fatigue is not 
only because waste time and effort result in actual money 
loss, but because fatigue has a direct relation to the personal 
efficiency of the worker. The "all-tired-out" woman isn't 
either a successful housekeeper, or a happy mother, or a 
helpful member of the community. It has been proved that 
the recovery from normal fatigue can be quickly made with 
a small amount of rest, but "That it takes more than twice the 
amount of rest to recuperate from twice the normal amount 
of fatigue." (Gilbreth.) 

To prevent a more than normal amount of fatigue in 


household tasks, then, the homemaker should make a "sur- 
vey" or study of all her work conditions and remedy them 
as much as possible either by different location of equipment 
(see pages 21-37), by tne use f improved tools (see Chapter 
III) or by different methods of work (see Chapter II), 
remembering that light, height of working surface, air, pos- 
ture, heat, clothing are also factors which make for fatigue 
or the reverse. Next, after eliminating the unnecessary 
amount of fatigue, she must distribute the normal fatigue in 
a balanced way. Now, any period of work may be repre- 
sented by a "graphic curve," which will vary at different 
periods. In business we frequently hear of "three-o'clock" 
fatigue common among office workers; in industries, the 
fatigue may be most marked at certain other hours of the 
day. We call this hour or time when the fatigue is most 
noticeable, the "peak-load." 

Housework, like any other work, may be represented by 
a graphic curve. The author sent a questionnaire to 100 
women who did their own housework, and from their many 
replies prepared a graphic chart of housework for the 
period of one working day. This chart shows that in the 
period from 7 a. m. to 7 p. m. there were two distinct "peak- 
loads" one at about 2 p. m. and the other at 7 p. m. The 
location of these peak-loads in any individual case will, of 
course, depend on exactly what work is done in the period 
the "load" on a wash day coming perhaps at a different time 
from a day on which rooms were cleaned, or sewing done. 

There are two objects which the housekeeper must strive 
to achieve in relation to these "loads" as they occur in her 
own individual housework: 

i . Prevent the "peak" from mounting so high by better 
planning of the work schedule. 


2. Prepare and be ready to meet the "peak" when it 

If, in your particular case, the "peak" rises at 2 p. m. and 
you find yourself unusually fatigued at this hour, you may 
prevent the "peak" very greatly by better scheduling of your 
work in the morning so that you are not so fatigued at this 
hour. If 7 o'clock, the after-supper hour, seems again to be 
the most wearisome, then this, too, may be changed if a rest 
is taken in the late afternoon, or if much of the supper prep- 
aration is made in advance. In other words, better schedul- 
ing (see Chapter II) so as to more evenly balance the work- 
periods will do much to lessen definite fatigue points of the 
working day. 

Again, if a certain "peak" of the day must be necessarily 
high, and nothing you can do by planning will change it from 
that hour, then you must prepare to meet it by coming to it in 
a rested condition by making extra advance preparations, etc. 
For instance, 5 130 in the author's house is a very trying 
"peak-load" indeed. It is the children's supper hour; it is 
the time when the baby is undressed and bathed for the 
night ; and the time when the other members of the family 
corne home from business. No better scheduling will alter 
these facts. Therefore, they must be met as efficiently as 
possible. The table set in advance, several supper foods 
pre-cooked, the bath materials laid ready, the homemaker 
rested by a reclining nap, and refreshingly dressed, all help 
to meet this "peak-load" with the minimum of friction, hurry, 
and energy. 

In all cases, heavy work like wall cleaning, sweeping, 
laundry, etc., should be followed by periods of sitting work. 
Again, excessive sitting should be interchanged with stand- 
ing or walking around. It may be given as a rule, that the 


more strenuous the work, the longer should be the duration 
cf the "rest" period (or whatever means is taken to counter- 
act the fatigue) and the more frequent the rest periods 
should be made. It is a conimon mistake, especially of ener- 
getic women, to start a "spurt" of work, and "see it right 
through" without stopping. In general, it may be said that a 
two-hour interval of one kind of work is long enough, and 
that every two hours there should be even a slight rest, relax- 
ation, change of posture, music, or mental interest. 

When you think you just can't possibly wash another dish, 
go and put a stirring march record on the phonograph, or 
when your back gets tired at the stooping cleaning work, put 
on a polka or a schottisch and see what music does to sweep 
away fatigue! A face sponge, a clean waist, or a cup of 
malted milk are other first-aids to relaxation. 

More work can be done if the worker applies herself stead- 
ily over short periods than if she works less steadily, or too 
steadily over prolonged periods. 


Another source of fatigue is found in disorderly, upset 
kitchens and overcrowded sinks, and rooms which have been 
allowed to "look like a sight." From the efficiency point of 
view such overcrowding should never be allowed to happen, 
not only because it causes excessive bodily fatigue to clean 
up such unusual confusion, but chiefly because disorder cre- 
ates mental fatigue of a severe kind. "Clutter" causes the 
worker to become discouraged, and this in turn lowers her 
work efficiency. Therefore, those methods which prevent 
confusion, such as definite place for grouped equipment, the 
cleaning up of mixing bowls in cooking, the "pick-up-as- 
you-go" habit, are to be followed not only because they save 
time, but because they save emotional fatigue. 



Clothing should serve these five purposes : ( I ) moderate 
warmth; (2) ventilation; (3) freedom from pressure; (4) 
cleanliness; (5) aesthetic appeal. Much fatigue (and thus 
lowered personal efficiency) is caused by too heavy under- 
wear which does not permit ventilation to the skin. Fatigue 
is also caused by working in too tight clothing instead of 
doing such work as heavy cleaning in bloomers and middy 
blouse, thus freeing the legs from restriction. (See pages 
167-168.) Clean or new clothing also acts as an important 
antidote against fatigue by increasing the feelings of pleas- 
ure, change, and visual satisfaction in color, form, and tex- 
ture which it gives the wearer. 

A whole chapter could be written on the one point alone 
of women's general clothing and its relation to their personal 
efficiency. Most home women spend entirely too much time 
and emphasis on the subject of clothing; they have numerous 
changes and dresses which are too elaborate and whic h are 
made according to the arbitrary whims of fashion. It is a 
lamentable fact that while home women (more than business 
women) spend literally days of time thinking, discussing and 
making clothing, they spend almost no time in originating 
clothes to suit their personality, either in color and line or in 
developing such dresses that will make for more efficient work 
or greater (esthetic appeal. Instead of studying their own body 
proportions and the colors that would enhance their good 
points, and making clothing to emphasize the beauty of these 
proportions and colors, they mistakenly follow "fashion." 
Thus the home woman is constantly "altering" this and that 
gown to adjust to fashion's vagaries, no matter whether they 
suit her or not, and if she has growing daughters, the appal- 
ing amount of time that this takes, and the inharmonious 


clothes that result, certainly detract from her personal effi- 
ciency an amount of time and effort which could be devoted 
to other interests with far more profitable results. 

Similarly, many women with children, especially girls, 
follow standards of dress for their children which are out 
of all proportion to their standards of living in other respects. 
They put lace-fringed white petticoats and embroidered 
white dresses on little girls, and make for them clothing which 
does not allow the highest comfort or make the child look its 
best. They make the mistake of thinking that "hand tucks" 
and embroidery the details of clothing give to dress that 
beauty which is based only on the selection of right colors 
and proportionate lines and form if these be wrong and 
inartistic, no amount of needlework will cover it up ! More 
time should be devoted to a study of the design and textures 
of clothing and less to the details of construction. Every 
woman should try and design for herself, or have designed 
for her, one work dress which best fits her needs and one 
house-gown for home wear which is artistic and brings out 
her "best points" regardless of fashion. These two can 
then be copied in many materials to give variety, yet their 
making will always be more standardized and less time- 
taking than regular clothing, besides assuring that the design, 
line and form on which they are made needs no "altering" 
twice a year, but is always such as will best express the 
personality and emotion of the woman who wears them. 

Further, the time consumed in the dressing process is often 
out of all proportion to its results or necessity. One of the 
minor but still important details in developing the woman's 
personal efficiency is to see how easily and quickly she can 
make her dressing schedule, and reduce such a mechanical 
process of repeated daily occurrence to the minimum. It 
may be interesting to know that in a series of time tests on 


dressing, it was found that a woman could easily dress for 
the street in ten minutes, or for a formal function in twenty 
minutes, if she followed a standard practice and kept her 
mind on what she was doing! 


"What, take more exercise when I do all my own house- 
work ?" many women may exclaim in surprise. In general, 
all women in the home take too little exercise to keep them in 
good condition, and to enable them to store up surplus vital- 
ity. Most housework is done indoors, does not give a chance 
for increased air supply and invigoration ; second, cooking, 
dusting and the like are all relatively slow work as compared 
with tennis, golf, basket-ball or such sports for women. It is 
seldom that housework makes a woman perspire and get 
into that "glow" which is so essential to perfect condition. 
And last, few women get into housework the "play" idea 
which the best forms of exercise give. 

Therefore, the homemaker, above all other women, needs 
to indulge in daily outdoor exercise and sports, particularly 
such as develop the leg muscles. A woman thinks she is so 
tired from housework that she cannot take other exercise, 
and makes the mistake of thinking that "rest" always con- 
sists in lying down or taking a warm bath, etc. On the con- 
trary, she should take that form of outdoor exercise which 
would not only offer her a change of scene, but which would 
so develop her as to enable her to stand the strain of the 
unusual standing and "tracking" she may have to do. A quick 
walk of at least two or three miles daily is an absolute neces- 
sity. Or if she can indulge weekly in tennis, golf, swimming, 
or plain gymnastics, she will receive great benefit. 

Any woman who thinks she "doesn't need exercise" should 


watch her breathing when she runs for a car, or compare 
herself with women who are noted swimmers, golfers, etc. It 
is a peculiar delusion of many women to fail to see that 
exercise develops reserve nerve force as well as muscular 
resistance. Often they look at exercises as entirely unneces- 
sary, thinking that the slow, and often puttery work of stand- 
ing, sitting, tracking housework is genuine exercise. Isn't it 
unusual for the average married woman to take time for out- 
door sports ? Doesn't the term "housekeeper" usually carry 
with it a "settled" stay-in-the-kitchen sort of woman who no 
longer follows many of the sports in which, perhaps, as a 
girl she excelled ? Yet need this be so ? Real, vigorous daily 
outdoor exercise is demanded of every homemaker who 
wishes to keep her efficiency at the top notch. 

Thousands of women think that as homemakers they are 
"overworked." Some, indeed, are working beyond their 
strength. But the plain facts are that most of these thou- 
sands of women who think they are being overworked are 
instead victims of bad air, wrong diet, poor elimination, 
body poisons, lack of exercise and worry and mental disquiet. 
They make the mistake of thinking that because they are 
"tired" it is work which is fatiguing them. They fail to 
see that most often it is not the work of the house, but these 
other wrong living habits that cause the fatigue and weak- 
ness. There are some women, perhaps, working beyond their 
capacity, but on the other hand their working capacity is 
only a fraction of what it would be if they took exercise, if 
they were not constipated, if they did not eat wrong foods, 
if they did not worry ! There is no better economy in life 
than to keep up one's working power, and the homemaker on 
whom not only the work of the home depends, but also its 
guidance in educational and spiritual needs, must keep up 
her working power by strict attention to right living habits. 



Finally, it is an excellent plan to have a "survey" or diag- 
nosis made annually of all body conditions and organs, even 
tho the woman may feel in perfect health. Never was the 
saying, "a stitch in time," more applicable. We all know 
the tooth which decays entirely, when a tiny filling the year 
previous might have saved it. So, too, such a "survey" of 
heart, blood pressure, sex organs, eyes, teeth, etc., may reveal 
slight indications of wrong which, taken in time, will never 
become the aggravated symptoms and illness they might 
develop into if unobserved at the start. One week spent in 
a sanitarium under the constant observation of trained health 
specialists will more than repay the cost, especially if the 
woman later follows the course of diet, or exercise, or 
hygiene planned for her special problems. 


There was a recent widespread discussion on the point of 
whether the home woman did not allow herself to stagnate 
mentally so that, say at 40, she would be unable to success- 
fully undertake a course of college work, and that she is 
always, as a matter of fact, less mentally alert than other 
women who have not been married or been homemakers for 
a number of years. It is often pointed out that as a class, 
homemakers are less interested in public affairs, less keenly 
alive than women who have made careers for themselves in 
other work or professions. Is this true, or need it be true? 

It must be admitted, however regretfully, that far too 
many married women permit themselves to slip back into a 
slough of 'mental inertia; they "lose interest"; they don't 
keep up with current events; and particularly they allow 
their minds to grow rusty and refuse to consider problems 
of beyond-the-home or of abstract interest. Here is, per- 
haps, the. one crucial difference between men's work and 



homemaking as commonly practiced: men have had and do 
now follow tasks just as fatiguing, just as monotonous, just 
as limiting as any washing dishes or bathing babies could 
possibly be (let anyone who does not believe it think of men 
who run elevators, drive teams, add up figures, collect tickets, 
handle freight, dig sewers and the other jobs which make 
up the bulk of men's occupations) ; but men have, as a group, 
kept up their mental development because they separated 
their day's work from their after-work avocations and inter- 
ests. Men rune not, nor do they have, necessarily more time 
than women, but they have utilized that spare time and after- 
work-hours fnedom to better advantage. 

Concretely, here is Mr. Smith, who works from 7:00 to 
7 :oo as an express agent certainly a confining, monotonous 
kind of employment. Here is Mrs. Smith, who works from 
7:00 to 7:00 at the confining, monotonous tasks so many 
women claim of the home. But Mr. Smith reads a good 
daily paper ; he bowls once a week ; he spends Saturday after- 
noon at a free swimming tank; he votes; he belongs to a 
club of "fellers" who have great meetings solving problems 
for the president, the war, the railroads; he has a hobby 
for shooting galleries, or dogs; and, even if not a college 
professor, Mr. Smith keeps up his mental development out- 
side of work hours. But Mrs. Smith does she read a good 
paper ; does she swim ; does she belong to a club to discuss 
broad civic and abstract problems ; does she have a whole- 
some hobby or is it not too true that many and many a Mrs. 
Smith's whole universe is bounded by the price of butter, 
how Susie's dress is to be made, the baby's symptoms, and 
what Mrs. Jones told her about the Browns does she not 
"talk shop" most of the time ? 

We must be fair and admit that the interests of many 
homemakers are bounded by the over-elaborate, petty details 


of their own individual housekeeping. We must admit this in 
order to clear homemaking of the many charges heaped 
against it by both men and women today; it is not home- 
making that is narrow and limiting in mental discipline, but 
the fact that so many homemakers have neglected to have 
other definite, beyond-homemaking interests. Men have fol- 
lowed their work or occupation, and also an avocation a 
spare-time set of interests ; but many women have wrongly 
permitted homemaking to be both a vocation and an 

This is a serious point, because it has had so much effect 
on the popular idea of homemaking as "uninteresting," and 
why, particularly, numbers of young women think only of 
a "housekeeper" in terms of disparagement and reproach. 
Does Mr. Smith, the express agent, get his mental culture, 
such as it is, from his job itself? But Mrs. Smith has made 
the error of supposing that she could get all her mental cul- 
ture from washing dishes. And often, because she didn't 
find it in washing dishes, she has wrongly, most wrongly, 
blamed dishwashing and wishes she were working at some 
other job. Now, the whole problem here is for every home- 
maker to find for herself extra homemaking avocations, in- 
terests, and pursuits, and to develop herself as a human 
being outside and beyond her housework and child-raising 

She can do this by : 

i. Reading newspapers, magazines and books of the better 
class, particularly books on civics, psychology, government, 
ethics, and critical reviews of more abstract interest 

2. Having a hobby or fad far removed from housework, as 
music, sketching, garden, or flower collecting, care of pets, 
designing, civic improvement, suffrage, or some kind of 
reform work. 

3- Taking daily and weekly physical recreation in gymnastics, 
walking, tennis, or other sports. 


4. Belonging to clubs or associations having broader interests 
or the wider interests of the home as objects, housewives 
and consumer leagues, civic clubs, art associations, etc. 

5. By giving even a short moment each day to abstract think- 
ing, and cultivating a well thought out philosophy of life. 

Women as a group, too, do not read enough worthwhile 
books. They overindulge in novels and fiction, but should 
also read books dealing with civics, labor problems, sociol- 
ogy, history, etc. It is even more necessary for the home- 
maker than for other women to include such reading in their 
plans for personal efficiency, since they are more closely 
confined and out of touch with world events. They should 
also read magazines other than the so-called "women's mag- 
azines," which unfortunately cater largely to the home in a 
narrow concrete way instead of to the larger human inter- 
ests of the world of both men and women. Among the most 
profitable magazines are; The Literary Digest, The Review 
of Reviews, The New Republic, The Atlantic Monthly, 
World's Work, National Geographic, The Bookman, Good 
Health, The Woman Voter, Journal of Home Economics, 
etc. And there are many, many fine broadening books if the 
homemaker will but seek them. 


A reputedly brilliant man once said to the author : "Well, 
Mrs. Frederick, after a woman has found out how to save 
time and effort by following the ideas you give her, what 
is she going to do in all this spare time she has saved?" 
What, indeed, is the object of all the more efficient methods 
for doing work, the use of laborsavers, the time, effort and 
nerve-saving plans which this course on "Household Engi- 
neering" advocates so strongly to the homemaker? Is it 


only that she can do in ten minutes tasks which formerly 
took her twenty, or that she may find herself less tired by 
using a washing machine than by rubbing on a washboard? 

No ; far from it ; the real object in saving time and effort 
in the work of the household is to enable the homemaker to 
have leisure time to devote to interests which are more im- 
portant than the mere mechanics of living. Looked at 
closely, the homemaker must satisfy the following demands : 
(r) the manual or largely physical tasks of cooking, sewing, 
cleaning what we call the "mechanics of living" which are 
involved in ordering and arranging that food, shelter, cloth- 
ing, warmth be supplied as efficiently as possible to her fam- 
ily; (2) the mental and spiritual tasks of providing the 
"home atmosphere" of stimulation, sympathy, education, 
ethics, love to both husband and children; (3) the three- 
fold physical, mental and spiritual demands of her own de- 
velopment as a woman and as a human being ; (4) the mental 
and spiritual tasks of sharing in the larger home of the com- 
munity and home of the nation by being a good neighbor, 
civic worker and patriotic and loyal citizen. 

Now, looked at broadly, which set of demands are the 
most important ? We can easily see that all demands should 
be satisfied in the ideal homemaker 's life; but we can say 
truly that the first set of demands, the mechanics of living, 
important as they are, are not as important as any of the 
other three demands. In other words, the family, or men 
and women and children as individuals, are not getting all 
or even a full share of life if their food, shelter and cloth- 
ing needs are completely satisfied, and nothing more. The 
most important needs are surely the mental and spiritual 
wellbeing which it is the homemaker's peculiar function 
to pour out to her family and the community. "Man can- 
not live by bread alone," it is written, and Jesus praised 


Mary, even though she only sat at his feet and listened, while 
Martha busied herself with household duties. 

The real object, then, in all household efficiency, is to so 
lessen and reduce the time required and consumed by the 
demands of the mechanics of living the dusting, and cook- 
ing, and washing, and mending of garments that the home- 
maker shall have leisure time to devote to the three other and 
far more important ends of homemaking. "Household Engi- 
neering" is valuable only as a means to this end it must 
never be regarded as an end in itself. Thousands of women 
have all their lives been nothing but housekeepers they 
have fed their husbands three kinds of pie, but they have 
not fed them sympathy and interest in their business, or com- 
radeship in work and recreations; they have spent hours 
seeing that their children were "properly" dressed, but they 
have not taken as many hours to see that the children were 
properly chaperoned, or trained, or brought in contact with 
stimulating and habit- forming persons, arts, or educational 
opportunities; they have broken their backs dusting and 
sweeping and scouring their own individual hearths and 
chairs and garbage pails but they have neglected to keep 
the schools, and the amusements, and the city garbage pail 
up to a high and safe standard. 

Or, again, thousands of married women have secretly or 
openly repined because they "never had the time" to follow 
up some cultural pursuit like music, and the arts, or indulge 
in some business which attracted them. Marriage and child- 
bearing is thus commonly regarded as a barrier towards any 
outside "career" or cultural achievement; indeed, many 
brilliant women have refrained from marrying or refused 
at least to bear children because it has been so commonly 
accepted that housekeeping is so absorbing, so overwhelming 
that it does not leave any room to carry on other interests 
and pursuits at the same time. Is this, or need it be, true ? 


If we sincerely study and face the facts, do we not find 
rather that many of these thousands of women do not value 
and make the most of the time and leisure they do have? 
Or, do they not waste hours in social chit-chat, in needless 
entertaining, in unnecessary thinking about clothes, in time- 
wasting shopping, marketing, etc., instead of putting this 
valuable time to some definitely planned work or interest ? 

What is the value of one hour saved each day ? Unless its 
use is planned for, this time is gone forever, and there is 
really no need or use in increasing the household efficiency 
which gives leisure unless it is planned to be utilized to the 
best advantage. Thirty minutes saved each day equals three 
hours per week of working days, or 156 hours a year. The 
100 best books of the world could be read in about 36 months 
of this time, saved at the rate of only a half hour per day ! 

But the homemaker's life is from twenty to thirty years 
think of what could be accomplished over this period of years 
with only a saving of thirty minutes a day, that were planned 
for! One could perfect a modern language, learn a com- 
plete science, take a course of music, master a business, in 
the spare time of only thirty minutes per day distributed 
over the span of homemaking life. Think what you could 
do if you saved an hour, or an hour and a half and then 
made the best use of it! 

It is a mistake for women to think (as many do) that men 
have "more chance" to attain eminence or success in cultural 
pursuits than women, especially homemakers. Investigation 
proves that many, many men who have achieved notable 
success in some line have done it in after-work hours' leisure. 
So often women exclaim, "Oh, I had to give up my music," 
or, "I can't do any of these things because my housekeeping 
takes up all my time." Now, let it be repeated again that 
men have had to apply themselves at monotonous jobs and 
hard work, and that, all things considered, the responsibility 


ot earning a living and supporting a family is as great a 
responsibility as that of managing a house and children. If 
more men have attained success, it has been in spite of family 
and work responsibility it has been because men have or- 
ganized themselves, organized their time and their leisure 
to make it count the most. Lincoln, Franklin, Carnegie all 
utilized their after-work hours and planned definitely to 
reach some desired goal ; Lamb and Hawthorne and others 
were clerks tied to a most rigorous daily routine when they 
yet found time to write their beautiful fiction ; and the 
example of such women as Harriet Beecher Stowe, who 
wrote Uncle Tom's Cabin in spite of poverty and care of 
small children, and Mme. Schumann-Heink and Louise 
Homer, who are great artists even though they have had six 
and eight children, and the lives of many other actresses, 
literary women, etc., all prove that homemakers can achieve 
a large share of personal efficiency and development, even 
world distinction, without sacrificing the emotional benefits 
of family life if they organize themselves and plan the 
use of their leisure time. 


Also, not only do few women plan to organize their time 
to the best purpose, but they do not organize their households 
as men do their business, into a going concern. For instance, 
it is a very poor strata of business man who, all himself 
answers the phone, writes his own letters, files them, gets 
the business, then comes back to the office and prepares it, 
etc., etc. He employs even a low-price assistant to do some 
of the work so that he can devote his own time to the more 
important phases of the business. In other words, he values 
his own time, and refuses to spend this high-price time at 
work which some other low-price assistant can do equally 
well. The idea of the modern, efficient "organization" is to 


have one acting head with co-assistants, helpers and others 
who are responsible for, and who do relieve the acting head 
of details, so that he will be able to put his entire energy into 
the more important work of an executive and manager. 
But few homemakers are willing to give over responsibility 
and to delegate authority to assistants they still mistakenly 
cling to the old, inefficient conception of an "organization" 
that of having one head who has authority, and who must 
pass on every detail and practically carry the whole respon- 
sibility before anything is done. 

Concretely, many women insist on doing "everything my- 
self." They take hours doing the mending, or making baby 
dresses, when perhaps they were never trained for sewing, 
but can cook or do something else unusually well. Why not 
give over certain tasks about the home to others who are 
more experienced and fitted for them? Is it not a mistake 
to try and "do everything well" ? The author knows a clever 
business girl who married and then entirely dropped her pro- 
fession and started in to do every bit of her own work, in- 
cluding the sewing, which she found unusually difficult. 
After a few years she was an entirely different woman ; she 
was exhausted from trying to learn and do several kinds of 
strange work she scattered her efficiency. Would it not 
have been a great deal better to continue proficiency in her 
specialty in her spare time, and by means of it pay some 
woman who was an expert sewer and thus save her own 
energy at the same time she gave employment to another 
woman who needed it? 

It is therefore far more important that the homemaker 
have a definite purpose and plan for the use of the leisure 
time which household efficiency will give her, than that it 
merely enables her to accomplish her present houseworti 
with less effort. It is not lack of time which handicaps the 
homemaker, but lack of power, lack of will and a strong 



enough ideal to force her to subordinate housekeeping routine 
to the attainment of the higher ends of personal and family 
happiness and success. What shall the homemaker do with 
her leisure time ? Here are some suggestions : 


i . Take time to read more about her own specialty, as 
government and state food bulletins, books on 
household management, child care, house planning, 
equipment, etc. 

2. Take time for actual correspondence course in 
homemaking subjects ; attend special classes in cook- 
ing, food conservation, budget making, which her 
community may offer. 

3. Take time to interest herself in and understand her 
husband's business, so that she can aid, sympathize 
and be a comrade in his work. 

4. Take time to supervise her children's school work, 
play, friendships ; take them to museums, zoos and 
places of interest on their holidays. 

5. Take time for daily grooming, hygiene and physical 

6. Take time for reading and making personal thought- 
out decisions on the problems of life, ethics, immor- 
tality, philosophy of life, etc. 

7. Take time for music, art, language, business, hobbv 
or interest beyond housekeping. 

8. Take time to "keep up on" some specialty or pursuit 
in which she excelled before marriage, or by which 
she used to earn her living, so that she can relieve 
herself of some phases of housework for which she 
is not fitted, and so that, in case of death or disabil- 
ity, she would be more able to take upon herself the 
burdens of family support, if occasion required. 


9. Take time for interest in local school, housing, san- 
itation, temperance and food conditions belong to 
organizations having these aims as objects. 
10. Take time for active Red Cross or other war charity 
work ; act as census taker, soldier chaperone or other 
patriotic duty, either in war or peace. 


Sleep, air, posture, food, physical exercise, etc., have all 
been discussed in their relation to personal efficiency. We 
now come to the most important factor of all the home- 
maker's mental attitude toward her work and its great influ- 
ence on her personal efficiency. 

In the first place, numbers of women constantly work 
under a sense of hurry, they seem constantly to be trying 
to "catch up," and this sense of tension and uneasiness enter 
into every smallest act. Now all such feelings of worry 
and tension are wasteful of energy and make for the nervous 
debility of the worker. It has been proved that even mild 
worry is more exhausting than hard work, and that this sense 
of hurry actually reduces the speed of their work. Indeed, 
much of the fatigue and depression that women blame on 
housework comes instead from this totally unnecessary nerv- 
ous, wrong mental attitude which they permit to accompany 
their work. 

Instead, it is vitally necessary that the homemaker develop 
a sense of equanimity, repose, calm, or inner spiritual poise 
which she may exert even in the most trying of situations. 
And this poise consists not so much in repressing anxiety as 
in ignoring it. To illustrate the difference, think of the 
mother who draws in her breath, who gets all "keyed up" 
and tense when Tommy comes in yelling from a slight fall, 
and the other, wiser mother, who calmly refuses to allow 


herself to be "worked up," and you have the difference be- 
tween the inefficient, destroying mental attitude and the 
efficient and healthful mental one. 

In the first case, the woman allows her mind to be swayed 
by her emotion and acts just as it wills ; in the second case, 
she manages her mind and diverts and controls her attention. 
This "control of attention" is so important that every home- 
maker should practice it a few minutes daily, changing her 
attention from one thing which seems to absorb and master 
her, to some other thought, or even making her mind a blank 
nothingness. To do this easily is one of the greatest protec- 
tions against tension, worry and fatigue. It will enable her 
to "see through" a huge pile of unwashed dishes, a serious 
illness of one of the children, or be of immense value in 
countless emergencies. Indeed, this attitude of mental con- 
trol will, more than any one other thing, enable her to master 
housework and carry a heavy amount of work and strain 
without fatigue. 

Again, so many women allow themselves to be needlessly 
affected by "interruptions" of one kind or another. The 
author has had women tell her over and over that the inter- 
ruptions coincident with housekeeping work make them 
"nervous" and upset. Now, this need not be true. It is a 
psychical fact that monotonous work is far more fatiguing 
than interrupted work. The point is, not that the "inter- 
ruption" makes the woman nervous, but that her own mental 
attiude towards the interruption is the real cause of her irri- 
tation. If she would relax and welcome the interruption 
instead of allowing herself to be irritated by it, each inter- 
ruption would only serve as a rest and change of work, and 
means of lessening tension, instead of increasing it. 

Second, women have differing mental attitudes toward 
their work, most of which greatly limit their efficiency in that 
work. From thousands of letters which have come to the 


writer, and also from talking to women all over the coun- 
try, from farms, from small towns or large cities, I can say 
that women generally regard their work from some one of 
the following points of view : 

i. A widespread feeling that housework and child care is a 
kind of "trap" into which they have fallen because of their 
marriage, and from which they constantly struggle to es- 
cape, and yet which they cannot master or control. 

2. A clinging to the traditions and experience of the routine 
past, which makes them refuse to see the new modern con- 
ditions of homemaking, or to try and use improved methods 
or equipment because such practice was unknown to their 
mothers, or not included in their previous experience. 

3. An automatic, unthinking attitude, accompanied by unstan- 
dardized work, and lacking in any mental interest or imagi- 
to get finished as soon as possible in "any old way." 

4. A mania for some one phase of housework, as cooking, or 
sewing, on which all originality is spent to the neglect of 
an efficient management of the home as a whole. 

5. An excessive insistence on the details to the end that house- 
work is exaggerated, elaborated and repeated, and the more 
important executive side of housework neglected. 

6. A mistaking of the physical, manual tasks of housekeeping 
to the .almost total exclusion of time and attention upon 
the more important responsibilities of home-making ; an 
emphasis which measures homemaking efficiency solely 
by the amount of and the exhaustiveness of the physical 
tasks accomplished and the time spent on the mechanics of 

7- A general fear, anxiety, lack of confidence and inability to 
control the situation ; a refusal to make a survey of condi- 
tions, and knowing them, to apply definite, and even radical 
means of changing them ; a lack of self-discipline and con- 
trol of the will. 

8. A refusal to see in housework any opportunity for cultural 
development or self-improvement; a contempt for all house- 
work, with a preference for teaching, business, or other 
career, and the hope to be relieved of it entirely some time 
and take up other, more "stimulating" work. 


9. A failure to put into housework tasks the same interest, 
initiative and "punch" which are demanded to make any 
other occupation or business a success. 

10. A refusal to see beyond individual housekeeping and its 
problems into the wider city and national housekeeping of 
which it forms a part, and which it so much influences in 
regard to national habits of thrift, conservation, char- 
acter, stability and morale. 

ii. The parasitic attitude unfortunately rather common a 
feeling that society, their husbands, parents or somebody, 
owes them a soft place ; that they should not be expected to 
work, to give value received, but should be allowed to 
"adorn" society, amuse themselves, and cultivate their 
"higher faculties." 



The right mental attitude involves the reverse of all the 
wrong attitudes listed above. The homemaker must look 
at her work as it is, as a problem which is interesting, which 
is stimulating, which will call into play all her highest train- 
ing, and which, no matter how difficult, can be solved by 
the twelve principles of efficiency. (See page 9.) 

That homemaker has the right mental attitude when she 
holds before herself a strong ideal of what she wishes to 
accomplish in her work ; when she uses common sense in 
securing this ideal ; when she standardizes her conditions of 
work so they save effort and time; when she standardizes 
operations in her work, and writes down standard practice 
instructions of the best, shortest, easiest way to do a certain 
task, and exactly what tools or equipment will give this; 
when she takes competent counsel from some person's expe- 
rience, from a book, or a course of study ; when she makes a 
plan or schedule not only for her daily housework, but a 
plan which shall provide for the larger interests and self 
development she is seeking ; when, once having made such a 


plan, she dispatches it, or sees it through, against every 
obstacle and seeming difficulty ; when she keeps reliable rec- 
ords of her business, so that she knows the cost, specifica- 
tions, names, etc., required in that business ; when she trains 
her will by discipline to accomplish what she sets out to do ; 
when, finally, she gives herself and her family a fair deal 
and a true efficiency reward by achieving for herself and 
for them the largest measure of health, happiness, and 

One means of retaining the right attitude is to bring the 
spirit of a game or competition into* work. Try to make a 
"record" in some task, like bedmaking, or table setting. The 
next time try, with yourself, to better that record. Again, 
written standard practice instructions, such as may be hung 
in the kitchen or other room, are, in themselves, an Inspira- 
tion to keep up the high standard of work. 

Often "slogans" or mottoes hung up, even for a few days, 
have their effect in stimulating efficiency, as "Plan Your 
Work, then Work Your Plan." Always substitute science 
and tests for personal bias and tradition, and by this means 
keep up interest. How long does it take asparagus to steam 
how long to boil? Try sweeping and cleaning a room in 
the efficient order, then the reverse see if the work doesn't 
add in interest. Cultivate right -feeling about work be con- 
tented, enthusiastic, optimistic. 

Above all, do not waste time and energy in worrying 
over conditions and circumstances but expend the neces- 
sary mental energy to think them into better and more desir- 
able conditions. Often women become discouraged solely 
because they don't take time and trouble to think clearly; 
because they don't adopt the scientific method of test, experi- 
ment and research in housework to replace the old traditional 
methods. Today we must relegate to the scrap-heap the 
traditional technical experiences of the past. For instance, 


ji these times of conservation, who has use for recipes 
beginning with "8 eggs and I quart of cream"? Or, who 
today is interested in roasting meat over a spit when the 
pressure cooker is at hand? 

In other words, we must realize how rapid, how all-inclu- 
sive have been the changes in homemaking during the last 
fifty years fifty years ago, even twenty-five years ago, there 
was no pressure cooker, no fireless, no insulated oven ; there 
was no dishwasher, no washing machine, no heated mangle 
or electric utilities of any kind. Scarcely a can of food 
could be bought; clothing was all home-made. The home- 
making that was fitted to those conditions is not adjusted 
to the conditions of today. All too often young women speak 
scornfully of "housekeeping," when they have in mind the 
old-fashioned kind of housekeeping. It is time to realize 
that the era of the "Household Engineering" has come ! 


"Household Engineering" has only tried to show the new, 
modern conception of homemaking, with its many possibil- 
ities for scientific work, for the use of improved machinery 
in the home, for less waste in materials, energy and time 
to the end that the woman herself, and her family, and the 
nation be developed to the fullest poiver and vantage ground 
in health, happiness and true prosperity. If "Household 
Engineering" helps any homemakers and families do this, 
as it has so wonderfully helped the author, and if in any 
small measure it clears housekeeping from some of the slurs 
cast on it, and more rightfully places it in relation to the 
whole tremendous problem of woman, her work and devel- 
opment, and in relation to the business and industrial prog- 
ress of the present era, the author will be well repaid for the 
labor it has cost her a labor additional to the care of a 
country home and four young children a labor made pos- 


sible only by well planned work and equally planned- for 
minutes of leisure time ! 


Health and Personal Efficiency 

1. To what extent has your health affected your personal 

efficiency? What measures can you take to increase 
your degree of health and personal efficiency? 

2. Are you conscious of a "peak-load" in your daily work and 

what can you do to lessen it? 

3. To what extent and how has the study of Household Engi- 

neering saved you time in housekeeping? 

4. Have you a well denned plan for use of your spare time ? 

If so, what? If not, what appeals to you as worth 
working for? 

5. What is your attitude towards homemaking as a pro- 

fession ? 



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Family Secrets Washburne. $1.50. 

Will the Home Survive? W. L. George. $2.00. 

Fear and Conventionality Clews-Parsons. $2.00. 

The Woman Voter Austin. $2.00. 

Behind the Battle Lines Doty. $2.00. 

The Ambitious Woman in Business Gilbert. $2.00. 

Note. The foregoing books may be borrowed, one or two at a time, by 
members of the School by sending postage (120 to 240) with request. They 
will be sent to anyone on receipt of the price and postage by the American 
School of Home Economics, Chicago. 


Accounting, Need of, 265 

Accounts, Charge, Cost of, 323 
Household, 286 

Acetylene Gas, as Fuel, 122 

Address File, 301 

Advance Cooking, 197 

Advancement, in Division of In- 
come, 283 

Advantages of 'Servantless House- 
hold, 380 

Advertising and the Consumer, 357 
for Houseworkers, 442 

Adulteration of Foods, 341 
of Textiles, 360 

Air Moisteners, 471 
Fresh, Need of, 483 

Alcohol as Fuel, 118 
Irons, 239 

Alcove, Breakfast, 463 

All-baked Dinner, 201 

Allowance Plan, Objections to, 269 

Aluminum Utensils, 58 

Ampere, Meaning of, 125 

Arrangement of Rooms, 401, 457 

Artificial Silk, 362 

Ash Shutes, 463 

Avocations for Home-makers, 502 

Baby Garments, Washing, 263 
Babies, Schedules with, 76, 403 
Baked Dinner, All, 201 
Baking Temperatures, 207 
Balanced Diet, Calories in, 331 

Meals, 181, 484 
Balancing Household Accounts, 

Bank Checks, Advantages of 

Using, 295 
Bargains, Lure of, 358 

Seasonal, in Clothing, 368 
Bath Room, Care of, 153 
Bath Rooms, 461, 468 
Bath Tubs, 468 
Bed Making, Time Study, 82 
Bedroom Care, 152 
Beds, Disappearing, 464 
Bibliography, 517 
Bins and Drawers, Kitchen, 48 
Bluing, 220 

Boiled Dinner, All, 201 
Boiling Clothes, 219 
Bonus for Houseworkers, 433 
Borax, as Water Softener, 215 
Breakfast Alcove, 463 

Budget.Clothing, Typical, 366 

for Irregular Income, 296 

Food in Marketing, 327 

How to Make, 285 

Laws of, 278 

Need of, 266 

Plan in Spending, 271 

Typical, 284 

Variations in, 273 
Buffet Meals, 382 
Built-in Fixtures, 461 

Fixtures, Kitchen, 40 
Bulk in the Diet, 181 
Bulk vs. Package Goods, 353 
Bungalo Dress, 168 
Bungalows, 477 
Bushel, Legal Weights of, 348 
Business Equipment, 63 

Corner, 387, 449 

Corner, Need of, 312 
Butler's Pantry, 20 
Buying Clothing, 359 

Co-operative, 327, 406 

Efficient, 317-367 

Food, Refuse in, 336 

Furniture, 373 

House Furnishings, 372 

Meats, 191, 236 

Kitchen Equipment, 56 

Parcel Post, 328 

Seasonable, 327 

Staples, 325 

Cabinet Closets, 465 

Kitchen, 28, 136 
Calories, Composition of Food by, 


of Food, by Measure, 335 

of Food, Cost of 1000, 338 

per Pound, 331 

Table of, Average, 332 

Required, Daily, 330 
Canned Goods, Purchasing, 352 
Cans, Size of, 349 
Carbohydrates, 180 
Card Cookbook, 305 
Cards, Household Record, 298 

System of Household Account, 

Care of House Heaters, 473 

of Laundry Equipment, 253 
Cash and Carry Stores, 324 
Casserole Cooking, 202 
Chairs, Kitchen, 39, 490 

Rocking, 492 


5 22 


Change of Shift, 148 

Charge Accounts, Cost of, 323 

Checks, Use of, 295 

Children as an Investment, 282 

Cost of, 282 

Co-operation of in Servantless 
Household, 382, 400 

What to do with, in Country 

Home, 404 

Children's Clothing, 497 
China Buying, 374 
Cleaning Closet, 155 

in Servantless Household, 398 

Methods of, 146-167 

of Equipment, 105 

Outfit, List of, 171 

Rooms, Order of, 74 

Standard Practice in, 153 

Standardizing, 81 

Summary of, 172 

Vacuum, 156 

Walls, 175 

Cleansers, List of, 174 
Clearing away Processes, 21, 24 
Clippings, Filing, 307 
Closets, 464 

Cabinet, 465 

Cleaning, 155 

Laundry, 232 
Clothes Dryers, 231 
Clothing and Efficiency, 495 
. Budget, 366 

for Cleaning, 167 

Home-Made, 368 

Purchasing, 359 

Ready -to -Wear, 367 

Seasonal Reduction in, 368 
Cold Mangles, 240 
Color in Kitchen, 45 

Plans of House, 457 
Colored Clothes, Washing, 262 
Combined Living-Dining Room, 

Composition of Food by Calories, 


Confusion and Fatigue, 495 
Constipation, Evils of, 486 
Construction of Equipment, 103 
Consumer, Trained, 318 

Woman as a, 166, 316 
Contrast in Meals, 184 
Cookbook, Card, 305 
Cooking, 180 

Balanced Meals, 183 

Economies in, 207 

Fireless, 203 

in Advance, 197 

in Casserole, 202 

in Pressure Cookers, 134 

Left-overs, 195, 206 

Several Meals at One Time, 200 

Steam, 203 

Time Saving, 193 

with Same Tools, 196 
Cook's Rack, 34, 36 
Co-operative Buying, 327 

Living, Reason for Failure, 407 

Schemes, 405 

Corner, Business, 312 

Sewing, 369 
Corsets, 489 
Cost of Children, 283 

of Cleaning Outfit, 170 

of Cooking Utensils, 60 

of Distribution, 320 

of Fuels, 124 

of Laundry Equipment, 253 

of Laundry Tubs, 230 

of 1000 Calories, Table of, 338 

of Operating Electrical Equip- 
ment, 129 

of Operating Irons, 239 

of Paper Products, 143 

of Service, 413, 431 
Cotton Fiber, 212 

Testing, 361 

Country Home, What to Do With- 
out Service, 403 
Country Houses, Convenience for. 


Country Laundry, 229 
Country Schedules, 90 
Cut-price, Lure, 358 

Daily Schedule, The, 67 
Deep Breathing, 490 
Delivery, Cost of, 321 
Den for Father, 499, 459 
Despatching, 11, 66, 398 
Dining Rooms, 459 
Disappearing Beds, 464 
Dishwashing, Hand, 112 

in Servantless Household, 388 

Machines, Tests of, 110 

Standardizing, 79 

Time Study of, 79 
Dish Drainers, 109 

Warmers, 5l 

Distribution, Cost of, 320 
Division of Income, Typical, 273 

Laws of, 278 
Domestic Service, Objections to, 


Draft Regulators, 472 
Drawers, 466 

Kitchen, 48 

Drawing House-Plans, 474 
Dress and Efficiency, 496 

Budget, How to Make, 365 

Standards of, 497 

Working, 167 

Dressing, Efficiency in, 497 
Dressmaking, Records, 370 

Room or Corner, 369 

Screen, 369 

Standard Practice in, 371 
Dryers, Clothes, 231 

Dish, 109 

Drying, Clothes, 221 
Dumb Waiters, 464 
Dusting, 154 

Tools, 170 

Dustless Duster, 156 
Dust Pan, Long Handled. 165 

Shute, 463 



Duties of Special Servants, 445 

Eating Habits, Efficient, 485, 488 
Economy of Labor-Saving- Equip- 
ment, 392 
Efficiency, Personal, 481-515 

Reward, the, 431 
Efficient Home, Planning, 449-480 

Requirements of, 450 
Electric Cooking, 393 

Equipment, 123 

Irons, 237 

Light Plants, Individual, 478 

Power, 127 

Vacuum Cleaners, 158 

Washing Machines, 249 
Electrical Appliances in Servant- 
less Household, 393 

Devices, Cost of Operating, 129 

Measurements, 124 
Elevator Ice-box, 138 
Elevators, 464 
Employers, Women as, 435 
Employment Agencies, 441 
Enameled Iron Fixtures, 467 
Engaging Houseworkers, 443 
Entry, the, 460 
Equipment and Family Needs, 102 

as an Investment, 101 

Business, 63 

Cleaning, 170 

Cleaning of, 105 

Construction of, 103 

Cooking, List, 60 

for Home- Sewing, 370 

Grouping of, 21, 29, 225 

in Servantless Household, 391 

Kitchen, 56 

Laundry, Grouping, 225 

Laundry, List of, 253 

Relation of Schedules to, 88 

Size of, 106 
Exercise, Daily, 498 

of Mind, 500 
Expansion Tank, 470 
Exposure, of the House, 452 

Fair Deal for Houseworkers, 443 
Family Financing and Record 

Keeping, 265-312 
Farm House, Conveniences for, 


Laundry in, 229 
Father's Share in Servantless 

Household, 384 
Fatigue, 492, 499 

and Confusion, 495 

in Cleaning, 148 
Fibers, Textile, Testing, 360 

in Laundry Work, 212 
Financing, Family, 265 
Financial Records, 304 
Files, Card for Records, 298 
Filing, Methods of, 308 
Fireless Cooker, The, 130 

Time-Saving With, 89 

Fireless Cookers, Advantages and 
Disadvantages of, 132 

Automatic, Electric, 123 

Automatic, Gas, 131 

Kerosene, 120 

Fireless Cooking Methods, 203 
Flat Feet, Cause of, 490 
Flies and Mosquitoes, 480 
Floors, Kitchen, 42 

Cost of, 47 

Cleaning, 174 
Food Adulteration, 340 

Buying, Refuse, in, 336 

Buying by Nutritive Value, 330 

Expense in Division of Income, 

Habits, Efficient, 485 

Planning, 179-208 

Pure, Defined, 341 

Sanitary Standards for, 339 

Units per pound, Table of, 332 

Units Required Daily, 331 
Frying, Disadvantages of, 204 
Fuel Saving Devices, 130 

Saving in Cooking, 194, 206 

Saving in House Heating, 471 

Value of Food, 331 

Value of Foods by Measure, 335 
Fuels, Cost of, 124 
Fuels, Time Saving, 117 
Furnaces, 470 
Furniture, Buying, 373 
Furnishings, Simplifying, 398 

Garbage Disposal, 55, 479 

Gasoline, Irons, 239 
Stoves, 121 

Gloves for Cleaning, 169 

Grouping Food Supplies, 31 
Kitchen Equipment, 21, 29 
Laundry Equipment, 225 

Halls, 460 

Hands, Care of, 169 

Handkerchiefs, Washing, 219 

Hard Water, 214 

Harmony in Kitchen Equipment, 


Heating Apparatus, 
Heat Regulators, 472 
Health of the Homemaker, 481-493 

of the Mother, 104 
Height, Correct, of Ironing Board, 

of Laundry Tubs, 230 

of Shelves, 37 

of Sink, 37 

of Stool, 39 

of Stove, 38 

of Tables, 39 

Home-Made Clothing, 368 
Hot Water Supply, 51 

Heating, 470 
House Heating, 467 


House Planning, 449-480 
Household Accounts, 286 

Old Fashioned, 270 

Card Files, 298 

Household Tools, Helpful, 99-144 
Housekeepers, Institutional, 447 

Working, 439 
Housekeeping Efficiency, Object 

of, 505 
Housekeeping, Why Distasteful, 

Houseworkers, Management of, 


Book of Rules for, 444 

How to Hold, 432 

How to Obtain, 440 

Incentive for, 434 

Meals of, 437 

Part-time, 408 

Rights of, 425 

Schedules for, 428 

Social Life, for, 438 

Understanding with, 443 

Wages of, 431 
Humidifiers, 483 

Ideals, 9 

in Budget-making, 275 

of Servantless Household, 380 
Iceless Refrigerator, 479 
Improving Kitchen Arrangements, 

Income, Division of, 273 

Laws of Division of, 278 
Index, Visible, 311 
Indirect Lighting, 474 
Interruptions, 84, 511 
Institutional Housekeepers, 447 
Inventory, House, 304 
Investments, 282 

Rec9rd, 304 

Equipment, 101 
Ironing, Machine, 239 

Boards, 234 
Irons, 237 

Alcohol, 239 

Cost of Operating, 239 

Electric, 237 

Gas, 238 

Gasoline, 239 
Iron Stains, Cause of. 214 

Kerosene as a Fuel, 120 

Hot Water Heater, 53 

Stoves, 120 
Kitchen, The Labor Saving, 19-64 

Cabinets, 136 

Chairs, 39, 491 

Equipment, 56 

Equipment, List of, 60 

Floors and Walls, 43 

Grouping Equipment in, 21 

Improving the, 28 

Lighting the, 41, 474 

Table, Metal, 107 

Table Tops, 45 

Kitchen Ventilation of, 42 
Knives, Kitchen. 139 

Labels and the Consumer, 356 
Labor Saving Equipment, 108 

in Servantless, Household, 391 

Kitchen, 19, 64 

Tools, 99 

Labor Savers, Classes of, 108 
Laundry, The Practical, 211-264 

Equipment, List of, 253 

Grouping Equipment in, 225 

Room, 223 

Shute, 463 

Soaps, 216 

Stoves, 231 

Work, Commercial, Cost of, 40i' 

Work, Routing, 227 

Work, Saving, 401 
Left Overs, 195, 206 
Leisure Time, Use of, 503, 508 
Lighting, House, 473 

Kitchen, 41, 474 
Lime Soap, 214 
Lincrusta, 175 
Linen Closets, 466 

Fibers, 212, 359 

Record, 303 
Linoleum, 43 

Cleaning, 172 
Living Room, 457 
Long-handled Tools, 164 
Luxuries, 283 

Management of Servantless 

Household, 386 
Management of Houseworkers, 

Mangles, 239 
Market Days, 329 

Reports, Use of, 324 
Marketing for Meat, 191, 336 

Money Saving, 121 
Manual, Houseworkers, 444 
Materials in House Building, 456 
Meals, Balanced, 181, 485 

Healthful, 488 

Planned in Advance, 185 

of Houseworkers, 437 
Measurements, Electrical, 124 
Measuring Devices, 141 

Fraudulent, 343 
Meats, Buying, 191, 336 

Chopper, 107 

Wholesale Prices of, 337 
Medical Record File, 302 
Medical Supplies, Buying, 374 
Medicine Closets, 466 
Mental Attitude of Housekeepers 

15, 504, 513 

Menus for a Week, 187 
Mercerized Cotton, 362 
Milk, Comparative Price of, 333 
Mineral Salts, 18 
Mistress-Slave Attitude, 421 
Moisture, Adding to Air, 471, 483 



Mopping Tools, 171 
Mosquitoes and Flies, 480 
Mothers' Helpers, 411 
Municipal Housekeeping, 412 

Naptha Soap, Washing with, 260 
Nationality of Houseworkers, 447 
Nerves, How to Prevent, 492 
Net Weight Law, 347 
Nutrients in Food, 180 

Obtaining Household Help, 440 
Office Work vs. Housework, 92 
Operating Expenses, 281 
Order of Housework, 66 
Organizing the Home, 507 
Oven Temperatures, 207 
Ovens, Fireless Cooker, 120, 123, 


Overlapping Meals, 205 
Over Weight, Reducing, 486 

Pantries, 20 

Paper Products, 143 

Paraffine Boil in Washing, 260 

Parcel Post Buying, 328 

Part-time Service, 408 
Cost of, 412 

Path of the Sum, 454 

Peak-load in Housework, 493 

Personal Efficiency, 481-515 

Picking up, 383, 399 

Planned-over Meals, 194, 205 

Planning the Home, 449-480 

Plans for Housework, 65-95 

Plate Warmers, 51 

Play-Room, 400, 449, 459 
in Country Home, 403 

Plumbing, 467 
for Laundry, 227 

Polish, Furniture, 174 

Polishing Tools, 171 

Porcelain, Fixtures, 467 

Porches, 451 

Posture in Working, 169, 489 

Power in the Home, 394 
Washers, 230 

Preparing Processes, 21, 24 

Pressure Cookers, 134 

Price vs. Value, 319 

Principles of Efficiency Engineer- 
ing, 9 

Privacy, Need of, 450 

Privileges vs. Rights of House- 
workers, 425 

Promotion of Houseworkers, 433 

Protein, 180 
Calories, 333 

Pure Food, Definition of, 341 

Purchasing Clothing, 359 
Efficient Household, 315-376 
Sheet, 186 

Quantity Buying, 193, 324, 327 

Radiators, 471 

Record File, Divisions of, 300 

Records, Address, 301 

Clothes, 302 

Dressmaking, 370 

Financial, 304 

Household, 296 

Linen, 203 

Medical, 302 

of Sizes, 302 

Reliable, 11 
Receipts, Filing, 307 
Recipes, Cooking, Card File of, 


Reducing Overweight, 486 
Refrigerator Drain, 468 
Refrigerators, 54 

Elevator, 138 

Iceless, 479 
Relaxation, 491 

Rent, in Division of Income, 279 
Rest Periods, 69, 494 

for Servants, 425 
Retailing, Cost of, 323 
Rights of Houseworkers, 420 
Rinsing Clothes, 220 

Tray, 259 

Rough-Dry Laundry Work, 402 
Routing, Cleaning Work, 73 

Kitchen Work, 21, 25 

Laundry Work, 227 
Rugs, Cleaning, 163 

Sanitary Standards for Food, 339 
Saving Laundry Work, 401 
Saving Steps, 388 
Savings, Proportion of, 281 
Scales, 141 

Faulty, 343 
Schedule for a Week, 70 

Minor Tasks in, 75 

of Meals, 190 

Timing in, 83 

with Fireless Cooker, 89 
Schedules, 65, 95 

Advantages of, 83 

Country, 90 

Daily, 67 

Examples of, 69 

for Servants, 85, 428 

Dressmaking, 371 

in Servantless Household, 389 

Records of, 94 

Seasonable, 390 

Special, 76 
Scheduling, 11 
Scientific Management, 8 
Seasonable Buying, 327 
Seasonal Buying of Clothing, 368 
Seconds, Buying, 59 
Septic Tanks, 479 
Servant Problem, the, 377, 419 

Solution of, 422 
Servantless Household, The, 377- 

Servants, Cost of, 379 

Disadvantages of, 378 



Servants, How to Hold, 433 

How to Obtain, 440 

Management of, 419-448 

Management of Several, 445 

Schedule for, 85, 430 
"Servette," The, 137, 397 
Service, Part-time, 408 

Cost of Part-time, 412 
Serving Meals, 396 

'Sunday Breakfast, 385 
Set. Tubs, Cost of, 230 
Sewage Systems, for Country 

Houses, 478 
Sewing Corner or Room, 369, 459 

Screens, 369 

Shelter, in Division of Income, 279 
Shelves, Kitchen, 40 
Shoddy, 363 

Shoes for Housework, 490 
Short Weights, 346 
Shutes, 463 
Silk Fibers, 212 

Tests of, 362 
Sinks, Kitchen, 49 
Sitting at Work, 39, 490 
Size of Cans. 349 

of Equipment, 106 
Sleeping Out of Doors, 484 
Soaking Clothes, 218 
Soap, Laundry, 216 

Lime, 214 

Naphtha, Washing with, 260 

Solution, 263 

Social Life of Servants, 438 
Softening Water, 214 
Sprinkling, 222 
Square Deal for Houseworkers, 


Stains, Removing, 216 
Stairs, Planning, 460, 475 
Standard Operations, 10 
Standard Practice, 152 

Manual, 94, 444 

for Bathroom Care, 153 

for Bedroom Care, 152 

for Bread Making, 94 

for Cleaning, 151 

for Cleaning Living Rooms, 153 

for Dish Washing, 79 

for Dressmaking, 371 

for Houseworkers, 444 

for Washing, 255-262 
Standardized Household Service, 

Standardizing Cleaning, 81 

Dishwashing, 79 

in Servantless Household, 395 

Special Tasks, 77 
Standards in Servantless House- 
hold, 381 

Starch Formula, 264 
Starching, 221 
Stationary Tubs, 228 

Vacuum Cleaners, 162, 469 
Steam Cooking, 132 

Heating, 470 
Step Savers, 135 
Storage, Clothes, 302 

Stoves, Laundry, 231 

Kitchen, 50 

Student Help, Part-time, 410 
Style in Houses, 456 
Sun Plan of the House, 454 
Sunday as Day of Rest, 382, 385 
Sweeper, Vacuum, 157, 160 
Sweeping, 154 

Tools, 170 

Table Tops, 45 

Metal Kitchen, 107 
Taste of Meals, 103 
Telephone, Use of in Buying, 329 
Tests for Textile Adulterations, 

Textile Fibers, 212, 359 

Adulteration of, 360 

Purchasing, 359 

Test for, 362 

The Efficient Buyer of, 363 
Thermometer Cooking, 141 

Oven, 207 
Thermostat, 472 
Time Saving, 395 

Filing System, 310 

Fuels, 117 

in Cooking, 19, 196 
Time Schedule of Meals, 170 
Time Studies in Cooking, 197 

of Cleaning, 150 

of Cleaning Rugs, 163 

of Dusting, 497 

of Dishwashing, 78, 111 

of Peeling Potatoes, 53 

of Various Tasks, 81 
Time off, Cooking Planned for, 198 
Timing Special Tasks, 77 
Tools, Cooking, 60 

Cleaning, 170 

Household, 99-144 

Laundry, List of, 253 
Trademarked Products, 353 
Traps for Plumbing, 408 
Trays, Serving Breakfast on. 385 

Wheel, 137 
Tubs, Height of, 230 

Price of, 230 

Vacations for Houseworkers, 433 
Vacuum Cleaners, 156 

Cleaners, Permanent, 162, 469 

Fuel Saver, 135 

Steam Heating, 470 

Washers, 251 
Value vs. Price, 319 
Vegetable Preparation, 32 

Preparation, Time Study of, 53 

Preparing Table, 55 
Ventilation, House, 483 

Kitchen, 42 
Volts, Meaning of, 124 

Wages of Houseworkers, 432 
Wall Covering, for Kitchen, 44, 47 


5 2 7 

Walls, Cleaning, 175 
Wash Boiler Sprayer 
Wash Day, Tuesday, 73 
Washing Clothes, 217 

Machines, 244 

Planning the, 225 

Powder, 216 

Soda, Use of, 214 
Waste in Food Buying, 330 
Water in Laundry, 213 

Softening. 214 

Supply, Hot, 51 

Systems for Country Houses, 478 
Waste, Food, Preventing. 205 
Watts, Meaning of, 124 
Weekly Tasks. 66 
Weight of Women, Average, Table 

of. 486 

Weights and Measures, False, 343 

Weights per Bushel, Table of. 348 

Wet Wash. The, 402 

Wheel Trays, 137 

Wholesale Price. 324 
Price of Beef, 337 

Windows. 451 
Cleaning, 171 

Women, as Purchasing Agents, 

Wool Fibers, 212 
Tests of. 362 

Woolens, Washing, Standard Prac- 
tice. 261 

Worsted Fabrics. 360 

Working Housekeepers. 439 

Worker's Manual, 444 

Wringing Clothes. 217 


For Home Makers, Mothers, Houseworkers, etc. Professional 
Courses, for Teachers, Dietitians, Institution Managers, Nurses, 
Demonstration Agents, etc. 1 00-page Bulletin on request. 


12 Volumes 3,000 Pages 1,000 Illustrations 


Anna Barrows, Columbia Uni- HOLD, by Margaret E. Dodd, S. 

versity. B. Mass. Institute of Technology. 


Alice P. Norton, M. A., formerly Prof. Bertha M. Terrill, M. A., 

University of Chicago, Editor University of Vermont. 
Journal of Home Economics. 



Prof. S. Maria Elliott, Simmons Bosquet, S. B., Director A. S. H. E. 


HOUSEHOLD HYGIENE, by Prof. Amy E. Pope, Presbyterian Hos- 

S. Maria Elliott, Simmons College. pital, New York City. 



RATION AND CARE, by Prof. Kate M. Watson, formerly of 

Isabel Bevier, Ph. M., University Lewis Institute and University of 

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C. Cotton, M. D., formerly Rush Marion Foster Washburne, Editor 

Medical College, University of Mothers' Magazine. 


Price $1.50 per Volume. Textbook edition, special rate to schools 


6 Volumes 4,000 Pages 1,200 Illustrations 

(1) Handbook of Food and (2) Handbook of House- 
Diet keeping 

Chemistry of the Household ; The House : Its Plan, Decoration 

Principles of Cookery ; Food and and Care ; Household Hygiene ; 

Dietetics. Household Management. 

(3) Handbook of Health and (4) Handbook of Dress and 

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Household Bacteriology; Per- Textiles and Clothing; Care of 

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Price, % Leather Style, $3.00 per Volume. Textbook edition, special rate 

(-5) Lessons in Cooking, Through Preparation of Meals 
By PROF. EVA R. ROBINSON, B.S., University of South Dakota, and 
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BULLETINS Free-Hand Cooking, lOc; Food Values, lOc; Fire-Cent Meals, 
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American School of Home Economics, Chicago